Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network



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Dedicated to the conservation of marine mammals through rescue and rehabilitation, research and education.

TMMSN Presentations and Publications

TMMSN has made numerous national and international presentations and has been instrumental in providing research materials and assistance for numerous scientific papers and additional presentations. Contact us for more information, search the index below, or review the publications now available online on this website in PDF format.

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Publications Available for Download

Publications 1998 - Present

Publications in 2008

Cowan, DF, Haubold, EM, Tajima, Y. Histological, Immunohistochemical, and Pathological Features of the Pituitary Gland of Odontocete Cetaceans from the Western Gulf of Mexico. Journal of Comparative Pathology, 2008.

D.F. Cowan, and B.E. Curry. Histopathology of the Alarm Reaction in Small Odontocetes. J. Comp. Path. 2008, Vol. 139, 24e33.

Clark LS, Cowan DF, Pfeiffer DC, 2008.  A Morphological and Histological Examination of the Pan-tropical Spotted Dolphin (Stenella attenuata) and the Spinner Dolphin (Stenella longirostris) Adrenal Gland. (For a copy of this paper in PDF please email Lance Clark at: lance.clark@uaa.alaska.edu)

Patricia E. Rosel and Heidi R. Watts, 2008. Hurricane Impacts on Bottlenose Dolphins in the Northern Gulf of Mexico. Gulf of Mexico Science, 2008(1), pp. 88-94. (9.6MB file size...please be patient.)

Publications in 2006

Clark LS, Cowan DF, Pfeiffer DC, 2006. Morphological Changes in the Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)Adrenal Gland Associated with Chronic Stress. Journal of Comparative Pathology 2006, Vol. 135, 208-216

Cowan, DF and Tajima, Y, 2006. The Thyroid Gland in Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)from the Texas Gulf Coast of Mexico: Normal Structure and Pathological Changes. Journal of Comparative Pathology 2006, Vol. 135, 217-225

Turner J.P., Clark L.S., Worthy, G.A.J., Haubold E.M., Turnbull B.S. and Cowan D. F. 2006 Organ weights and growth profiles in bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, from the northwestern Gulf of Mexico. Aquatic Mammals 32: 46-57

Bloodworth, Brian. Comparative Feeding Biomechanics and behavioral performance of feeding in the family Kogiidae and Tursiops truncatus(Odontoceti, Cetacea)

Publications in 2005

Clark L.S., Pfeiffer D.C., and Cowan D.F. 2005. Morphology and histology of the Atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) adrenal gland with emphasis on the medulla. Anat Histol Embryol 34:132-140, 2005.

Clark, LS, Turner JP, Cowan DF, 2005. Involution of Lymphoid Organs in Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)From the Western Gulf of Mexico: Implications for Life In an Aquatic Environment. THE ANATOMICAL RECORD PART A 282A:67–73 (2005)

Tibbs, RF; Elghetany, MT; Tran, LT; Bonn, VW; Romano, T; Cowan, DF. Characterization of the coagulation system in healthy dolphins: the coagulation factors, natural anticoagulants, and fibrinolytic products. Comp Clin Path (2005) 14: 95-98. DOI 10.1007/s00580-005-0567-1

Publications in 2002

Cowan DF, and Curry BE:. 2002. Histopathological assessment of dolphins necropsied onboard vessels in the eastern tropical Pacific tuna fishery. Southwest Fisheries Science Center, Administrative Report LJ-02-24C. Available from NOAA/NMFS/SWFSC, 8604 La Jolla Shores Drive, La Jolla, CA, 92037.

Garner MM, Schwetz S, Ramer JC, Rasmussen JM, Petrini K, Cowan DF, Raymond JT, Bossart GD and Levine GA. 2002 Congenital diffuse hyperplastic goiter associated with perinatal mortality in 11 captive born bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). J. Zoo Wildl Med 33:350-355.

Romano, T, Abella K, Cowan D, and Curry B, 2002. Investigation of the morphology and autonomic innervation of the lymphoid organs in the pantropical spotted, spinner, and common dolphins (Stenella attenuata, Stenella longirostris and Delphinus delphis) incidentally entangled and drowned in the tuna purse-seine fishery in the eastern tropical Pacific. Southwest Fisheries Science Center, Administrative Report LJ-02-25C. Available from NOAA/NMFS/SWFSC, 8604 La Jolla Shores Drive, La Jolla, CA, 92037.

Publications in 2001

Clark, L.S., Cowan D.F., Worthy G.A.J., and Haubold E.M, 2001. An anatomical and pathological examination of the first recorded stranding of a Fraser’s dolphin (Lagneodelphis hosei) in the northwestern Gulf of Mexico. Gulf of Mexico Science, 20:38-43

Publications in 2000

Haubold, E.M., Cooper CR, Wen J, McGinnis MR, and Cowan DF.  Comparative Morphology of Lacazia loboi (syn. Loboa loboi) in dolphins and humans. Medical Mycology 2000 38(1):9,14.

Wardle, W.J., Haney TA, and Worthy GA. 2000. New host record for the whale louse Isocyamus delphinii (Amphipoda, Cyamidae). Crustaceana 73:639641.

Publications in 1999

Cowan, DF, 1993. Lobo's Disease in a Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)from Matagorda Bay, Texas. Journal of Wildlife Diseases 29(3), 1993, 488-489.

Cowan DF, Smith TL, 1999. Morphology of the lymphoid organs of the bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus. J. Anat. (1999) 194, pp. 505±517, with 16 figures. Printed in the United Kingdom.

Smith TL, Turnbull BS, Cowan DF, 1999. Morphology of the Complex Laryngeal Gland in the Bottlenose Dolphin Tursiops truncatus.  THE ANATOMICAL RECORD 254:98–106 (1999).

Turnbull BS, Cowan DF, 1999. Angiomatosis, A Newly Recognized Disease in Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Gulf of Mexico. Vet Pathol 36:28–34 (1999).

Turnbull BS, Cowan DF, 1999. Synovial Joint Disease in Wild Cetaceans. Journal of Wildlife Diseases, 35(3), 1999.

Publications in 1998

Turnbull BS and Cowan, DF.  Myocardial contraction band necrosis in stranded cetaceans.  J Comp Path 118:317-327.

Publications in 1995

Cowan, DF and Smith, TL. Morphology of Complex Lymphoepithelial of the Anal Canal ("Anal Tonsil") in the Bottlenose Dolphin, Tursiops truncatus. Journal of Morphology 223:263-268 (1995).

Cowan, DF. Amyloidosis in Bottlenose Dolphins, Tursiops truncatus. Vet Pathol 32:3, pp. 311, 1995.

Publications in 1994

Kumar, D; Cowan, DF. Cross-Reactivity of Antibodies to Human Antigens with Tissues of the Bottlenose Dolphin, Tursiops truncatus, Using Immunoperoxidase Techniques. Marine Mammal Science, 10(2):188-194 (April 1994)

Cowan, DF. Involution and Cystic Transformation of the Thymus in the Bottlenose Dolphin, Tursiops truncatus. Vet Pathol 31:648-653 (1994).

Book Chapters in Press

Cowan D.F. and Z. Gatalica: Immunohistochemistry in cetaceans. In Cell and molecular biology of Marine Mammals. CJ Pfeiffer, ed. Kreiger Pub. Co., Melbourne FL. 2001

Cowan D.F.: Pathologies. In Encyclopedia of Marine Mammals. W. Perrin, B. Wursig and H. Theweissen, Eds. Academic Press, 2000.

Cowan, D.F., C. House, and J. House: Public health aspects of certain transmissible diseases of marine mammals. In Handbook of Marine Mammal Medicine, F.M.D. Gulland and L.A. Dierauf Eds. CRC Press, 2001.

Cowan DF, Gatalica Z, Pfeiffer CJ. Immunohistochemistry in cetaceans In Cell and molecular biology of Marine Mammals. ed. Kreiger Pub. Co., Melbourne FL.

Haubold EM, Cooper CR, McGinnis MR, Cowan DF: Molecular identification of the infective agent of Lobo's disease of dolphins. In Cell and molecular biology of Marine Mammals. CJ Pfeiffer, ed. Kreiger Pub. Co., Melbourne FL. 2001.

Haubold EM, Cooper CR, McGinnis MR and Cowan DF. Molecular identification of the infective agent of Lobo's disease of dolphins. In Cell and molecular biology of Marine Mammals. C.J. Pfeiffer, ed. Kreiger Pub. Co., Melbourne FL.

Presentations 1998 - 2006

Scientific Presentations and Abstracts 2009:

Errol Ronje; Heidi Whitehead: Post-Mortem Findings in Seventeen Neonate Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) Stranded Along the Texas Coast. International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, Annual Meeting, San Antonio, TX, May 2-6, 2009

Scientific Presentations and Abstracts 2006:

Watts HR, Godlove L, Piwetz S,: An underwater stethoscope based on a directional hydrophone, for use in dolphin rehabilitation and diagnosis. International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, Annual Meeting, Nassau, Bahamas, May 6-9, 2006

Kinoshita R, Spielman D, Mauroo N, Chadwick B, Cowan DF: Spongiform encephalopathy in a stranded rough-tooth dolphin (Steno bredanensis) diagnosis. International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, Annual Meeting, Nassau, Bahamas, May 6-9, 2006

Cowan DF, Tajima, Y. Castilla, J, Soto C. Alzheimer-like amyloid plaques in the brains of aged dolphins. diagnosis. International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, Annual Meeting, Nassau, Bahamas, May 6-9, 2006

Clark LS, Cowan DF, Pfeiffer DC: A cross species comparison of cetacean adrenal glands. The Wildlife Society, Annual Meeting, Anchorage Alaska, September 2006

Johnson RF, Nishino TK, Cheruvu B, Ernst RD, Cowan D, Marshall, C. Virtual autopsy of a pygmy sperm whale Radiological Society of North America, 92nd Scientific Assembly and Annual Meeting, Chicago, Nov 26 - Dec 1 2006

Scientific Presentations and Abstracts 2005:

Clark, L.S., D.C. Pfeiffer D.C., Cowan D.F.: (2005). The morphology of cetacean adrenal glands: a cross-species comparison between Tursiops truncatus and Stenella attenuata. Annual Conference, International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, Seward, Alaska

Lipscomb, T. P., Berman-Kowalewski, M, Cowan D. F.: (2005) Angiomatosis in a new species of dolphin, Delphinus capensis, from central California 16th Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals, Society for Marine Mammalogy, San Diego, California, 12 - 16 December, 2005

Cowan D.F., McGinnis M.R.: (2005) Double fungus infection, with mycotic pseudotumor in a stranded bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus, from the western Gulf Of Mexico. 16th Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals, Society for Marine Mammalogy, San Diego, California, 12 - 16 December, 2005

Tajima Y., Yamamoto E., Kishimoto, M., Shimada A., Yamada, T.K., Cowan D.F. (2005) Amyloidosis in two Stejneger’s beaked whales (Mesoplodon stejnegeri) 16th Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals, Society for Marine Mammalogy, San Diego, California, 12 - 16 December, 2005

Scientific Presentations and Abstracts 2004:

Johnson, R. F., Nishino, T. K., Ernst, R. D., Cowan, D. F., Marshall, C. D., and Bloodworth, B. 3-DCT and MRI imaging of a pygmy sperm whale. Medicine Meets Virtual Reality San Diego, CA Jan 2004

Cowan, DF: Changes in patterns of disease in dolphins stranding along the Texas Gulf coast. 35th Annual Conference, International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, Galveston, Texas April 5, 2004

Cowan, DF: Lymphoid organs of the dolphin. University of Padua, Legnaro - Agripolis, Italy April 26, 2004

Cowan, DF: Neuropathology of the dolphin: experience with dolphins stranding along the Texas coast of the Gulf of Mexico. University of Padua, Legnaro - Agripolis, Italy April 27, 2004

Cowan, DF: Lung disease in the dolphin: influence of the diving adaptation. University of Padua, Legnaro - Agripolis, Italy April 28, 2004

Cowan, DF: The stranded dolphin as a biomonitor of the ocean environment. Workshop/ Symposium on Coastal Ecosystems of the Gulf of Mexico: Toward Integration of Research Groups. Centro de Ecología y Pesquerías , Universidad Veracruzana, Unidad de Servicios Bibliotecarios y de Información (USBI), Boca del Rio, Veracruz, México, June 30 - July 2, 2004. (Invited)

Cowan DF: A case of culture proven Brucella meningitis in a bottlenose dolphin. Biennial meeting, South East Stranding Region, National Marine Fisheries Service, Wilmington NC, August 5-7, 2004.

Scientific Presentations and Abstracts 2003:

Cowan, DF: Contributions of the necropsy: Experience of the Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network. The Sea of Japan Cetology Research Group, Tottori, Japan, June 7, 2003. (Invited, sponsored)

Cowan DF: Lymphoid organs of the dolphin. Nippon Veterinary and Animal Science University, Tokyo, Japan. June 10, 2003. (Invited, sponsored)

Cowan DF: Lung disease in the dolphin: Influence of the diving adaptation. Nippon Veterinary and Animal Science University, Tokyo, Japan. June 11, 2003. (Invited, sponsored)

Cowan. D. F., and Curry BE:. Histopathological assessment of dolphins necropsied onboard vessels in the eastern tropical Pacific tuna fishery. 15th Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals, Society for Marine Mammalogy, Greensboro, NC. Dec 14-19 2003


Clark, L.S., Pfeiffer, D. C. and Cowan D. F. Effects of acute and chronic stress on adrenal glands of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the western Gulf of Mexico. 15th Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals, Society for Marine Mammalogy, Greensboro, NC. Dec 14-19 2003

Scientific Presentations and Abstracts 2001:

Tibbs RF, Elghetany MT, Tran LT, and Cowan DF: Characterization of the coagulation system in healthy dolphins; Study of the coagulation cascade and natural antithrombotic factors. Texas Society of Pathologists, 80th Annual Meeting, Galveston, Texas, January 26-28, 2001


Haubold EM and Cowan DF: Normal and abnormal histologic features of the adenohypophysis of cetaceans stranded in the western Gulf of Mexico. International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, 32nd Annual Conference, Tampa Florida, April 28-May 2, 2001

Cowan DF: Histology and pathology of the thyroid gland in bottlenose dolphins stranded in the western Gulf of Mexico. International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, 32nd Annual Conference, Tampa Florida, April 28-May 2, 2001

Garner MM, Schwetz C, Ramer JC, Rasmussen JM, Cowan DF, Gribble DH, and Bossart GD: Congenital diffuse hyperplastic goiter associated with perinatal mortality in eight captive born bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) American Association of Zoo Veterinarians Annual Conference, Orlando Florida, Sept. 18-23, 2001

Tibbs RF, Elghetany MT, Tran LT, Van Bonn W, Romano T and Cowan DF: Characterization of the coagulation system in healthy dolphins: Coagulation cascade, natural antithrombotic factors and fibrinolytic system. Society for Marine Mammalogy, Biennial meeting, Vancouver, British Columbia Nov 28-Dec 1, 2001.

Abella, K, Cowan D, Curry B, and Romano T: Investigation of morphology and autonomic innervation of the immune system of the spotted and spinner dolphins (Stenella attenuata and longirostris) incidentally entangled and drowned in the tuna fishery in the Eastern Tropical Pacific. Society for Marine Mammalogy, Biennial meeting, Vancouver, British Columbia Nov 28-Dec 1, 2001.

Scientific Presentations and Abstracts 2000:

Clark, L.S. An Update on Stranding Events in Texas Between 1998-2000. 2nd Biennial Southeast United States Marine Mammal Stranding Workshop, Brunswick, GA.

Cowan, D.F.; The histopathology of the alarm reaction in dolphins. American Association of Zoo Veterinarians and the International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, New Orleans, LA

Knisely A.S., Z. Goodman, and D.F. Cowan: Hyaline inclusion bodies in the hepatocytes of marine mammals: Physiologic fibrinogen storage or congestion globules? Hepatologia 2000, 32:486A, Abstract 1306.

Worthy, G.A.J. Natural history of marine mammals. Keynote Address. 17th Annual Texas Sea Grant Marine Education Symposium.

Knisely AS, Goodman Z, Cowan DF: Hyaline inclusion bodies in the hepatocytes of marine mammals: Physiologic fibrinogen storage or congestion globules? American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases; Annual meeting, Dallas, Texas September 2000. Hepatologia 2000, 32:486A, Abstract 1306

Cowan, DF; The histopathology of the alarm reaction in dolphins. Joint meeting, American Association of Zoo Veterinarians and the International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana September, 2000

Scientific Presentations in 1999:

Turner, J.S., J.P. Turner, L.L. James, and G.A.J. Worthy. An examination of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), in the Gulf of Mexico, using morphometrics and hemoglobin profiles: A comparison of techniques. Galveston Bay Estuary Program. State of the Bay Symposium IV. Galveston, TX, January.

Cowan, D.F., B.S. Turnbull and L.S. Clark. Meningitis and Hydrocephalus in the bottlenose dolphin, (Tursiops truncatus), from the Texas Gulf Coast. International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine. Boston, MA, May

Clark, L.S., C.A. Creelman, G.A.J. Worthy, and D.F. Cowan. Wound Healing of a Shark Bitten Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine. Boston, MA, May

Turner, J.S., J.P. Turner, L.L. James, and G.A.J. Worthy. Using Hemoglobin and Morphometrics to Characterize Bottlenose Dolphin Stocks: A Comparison of Techniques. Society for Conservation Biology annual meeting. Washington, DC, June

Turner, J.S., J.P. Turner, L.L. James, and G.A.J. Worthy. Characterizing bottlenose dolphin stocks in the Gulf of Mexico using morphometrics and hemoglobin: A comparison of techniques. Thirteenth Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals. Maui, Hawaii. November

Haubold, E.M., B.S. Turnbull, L.S. Clark, and D.F. Cowan. Cycles and Trends of Pathology of Stranded Cetaceans in the Western Gulf of Mexico from 1991-1999. Thirteenth Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals. Maui, Hawaii. November

McKnight, C.A., B.S. Turnbull, and D.F. Cowan. Empyema and pleural effusion in atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) stranded along the western coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Thirteenth Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals. Maui, Hawaii. November

Turner J.P. and G.A.J. Worthy. Growth and development in cranial characters of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Gulf of Mexico. Thirteenth Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals. Maui, Hawaii. November

Clark, L.C., J.P. Turner, and D.F. Cowan. Involution of Lymphoid Tissues in Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) of the Western Gulf of Mexico. Thirteenth Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals. Maui, Hawaii. November

Cowan, D.F. and B.S. Turnbull. Renal neoplasms in the bottlenose dolphin, (Tursiops truncatus), from the western coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Thirteenth Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals. Maui, Hawaii. November

Scientific Presentations in 1998

Busbee, D. L., P.E. Bielec, D.S. Gallagher, and J.E. Womack. Karyotypic and Fluorescense In Situ Hybridization Analysis Indicate the Extent and Distribution of Chromosomal Conservation Between Man and the Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphin, Tursiops truncatus. World Marine Mammal Science Conference, Monaco, January

Clark, L.S., Marine Mammal Strandings in Texas. 1st Biennial Southeast United States Marine Mammal Stranding Workshop, St. Petersburg, FL, March

Cowan, D. F., J. Peterson, and B. S. Turnbull. Identification and use of Serum CK and Isoenzymes in the Assessment of Brain, Heart, and Skeletal Muscle Injury in Stranded Dolphins. World Marine Mammal Science Conference, Monaco, January

Curry, B.E., R.G. Le Duc, and A.E. Dizon. MTDNA Sequence Variation and Phylogentetics of Bottlenose Dolphins (Genus Tursiops) in a Worldwide Context. World Marine Mammal Science Conference, Monaco, January

Fertl, D., and A. M. Landry Jr. First Report of a Sharksucker (Echeneis naucrates) on a Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) and a reevaluation of Remora-Cetacean Associations. World Marine Mammal Science Conference, Monaco, January

Haubold, E. M., C.R. Cooper, M.R. McGinnis, and D. F. Cowan. Comparative Morphology of Loboa Loboi in Tursiops truncatus and Human Cutaneous Lesions: Are they really the same? World Marine Mammal Science Conference, Monaco, January

Schiro, A. J., D. Fertl, L. P. May, G. T. Regan, and A. Amos. West Indian Manatee (Trichechus manatus) Occurrence in U.S. Waters West of Florida. World Marine Mammal Science Conference, Monaco, January

Turnbull, B. S., E. M. Haubold, V.M. Ramanujam, N. W. Alcock and D. F. Cowan. Elemental Analysis in Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Western Coast of the Gulf of Mexico. World Marine Mammal Science Conference, Monaco, January

Turner, J. P., and G. Worthy. An Examination of the Cranial Morphology of the Bottlenose Dolphin in the Gulf of Mexico. World Marine Mammal Science Conference, Monaco, January

Clark, L. S. and D. F. Cowan. Histology of the Oropharyngeal Glands of the Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, San Diego, CA, May

Cowan, D. F., B.S. Turnbull, and E. M. Haubold. Organisms Cultured from Stranded Cetaceans: Implications for Rehabilitation and for Safety of Handlers. International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, San Diego, CA, May

Haubold, E. M. and D. F. Cowan. Sterility in an Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) with a Hyertrophic Pituitary and Hypogonadism. International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, San Diego, CA, May

Turnbull, B. S., D. F. Cowan, V.M. Ramanujam and N. W. Alcock. Do Dolphins have Protective Mechanisms Against Mercury Toxicity? International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, San Diego, CA, May

Turner, J. P., D. F. Cowan, G. A.J. Worthy, L. S. Clark , E. M. Haubold, and B. S. Turnbull. Organ Weights and Growth Profiles of Stranded Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Western Gulf of Mexico. International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, San Diego, CA, May

Cowan, D. F. and B. S. Turnbull. Advanced Necropsy Techniques. National Marine Fisheries Service, Southwest Regional Stranding Workshop. St. Petersburg, FL, March