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"Some people talk to animals. Not many listen though. That's the problem."

-A.A. Milne

NEFSC Passive Acoustic Research Group

NEFSC Passive Acoustics Group

Annamaria, Jenni, Sofie, Joy, Dani, Julianne, Dana, Genevieve, and Sarah - December 2017
(From left to right; top to bottom; Photo Credit: Christin Khan, NEFSC)


Sofie Van Parijs

Sofie has a BA and MA in Natural Science from Cambridge University, UK and a PhD in Zoology from Aberdeen University, UK. She worked as a postdoctoral scientist at James Cook University, Australia, the Norwegian Polar Institute in Norway, and Cornell University, USA before starting the passive acoustics research group here at the NEFSC in 2006.


Danielle Cholewiak

Danielle has a BSc in both Biology and Resource Ecology and Management from the University of Michigan, and a PhD from Cornell University's Department of Neurobiology and Behavior and the Bioacoustics Research Program at the Laboratory of Ornithology. She worked as a postdoctoral scientist at Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, and started in 2010 as a senior bioacoustician in the group working on towed array data collected from our vessel based stock assessment surveys as well as baleen whale acoustics and ocean noise research.


Genevieve Davis

Genevieve has a BS from the State University of New York at Binghamton and is currently working towards her PhD at the University of Massachusetts Boston. She was a NOAA Hollings scholar in our group in 2010 working on North Atlantic right whale calling behavior across seasons, after which she then joined the acoustics team in 2011 as a research analyst focusing on baleen whale acoustics and our educational outreach program in partnership with Woods Hole Sea Grant, COAST.


Dana Gerlach

Dana has a dual BS in Oceanography and Geological Sciences from the University of Michigan, and a Science Masters from MIT in Geochemistry and Paleoceanography. She joined the group in 2014 as the database and project manager for the acoustics research program.


Annamaria DeAngelis

Annamaria has a BS in Marine Biology from the University of Rhode Island and a Masters of Research from the University of Saint Andrews, Scotland. She has worked as a research analyst at Cornell's Bioacoustics Research Program and interned at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center researching beaked whales. She joined the acoustics group as a research analyst in 2014 and is currently focusing on beaked whale, sperm whale, and North Atlantic cod projects.


Jenni Stanley

Jenni has a BSc in Biological Sciences, specializing in Marine Science and a PhD in Marine Science from the University of Auckland, New Zealand. She worked as Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Auckland's Institute of Marine Science (Leigh Marine Laboratory), and in 2015 started as a Postdoctoral Scientist in the Passive Acoustic Research Group here at NEFSC and Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary (SBNMS). Her research has largely focused on how natural and anthropogenic sources of underwater sound effects temperate and tropical marine organisms, and is currently focusing on soundscape ecology and sound production in a number of fishes and invertebrates in SBNMS.


Paul Caiger

Paul has a BSc in Biological Sciences from the University of Auckland, New Zealand, an MSc and a recently completed PhD both in Marine Science undertaken at the University of Auckland's Leigh Marine Laboratory. Previous research includes acoustic physiology of fishes, evolutionary ecology of fishes, and temperate reef ecology. Paul joined the passive acoustics team in 2016 and is working on acoustic ecology in Atlantic Cod.


Timothy Rowell

Timothy has a BA in Biology from the College of the Holy Cross, a MS from the University of Puerto Rico Mayagüez, and a PhD in Marine Biology from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. His previous research focused on fish sound production during reproductive periods and its potential utility for population and behavioral monitoring through comparisons with other data sources. He has joined the Passive Acoustic Research Group at NEFSC as a Postdoctoral researcher in 2018, where he will collaborate on a broad project examining soundscapes in National Marine Sanctuaries.


Bridget Mueller-Brennan

Bridget graduated from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 2019 with a BS in Mathematics and a minor in Integrative Biology. During her undergraduate career, Bridget worked in the Cáceres lab as a Biomath Fellow, modeling the epidemiology of a parasitic fungus in a lake ecosystem. She was a NOAA Hollings scholar during the summer of 2017 where she worked as an acoustic analyst for the Omura's Whale Project, studying the temporal and spatial distribution of Omura's whales. She continued working on this project and returned to the Passive Acoustics group as a research analyst in 2019, where she currently studies low-frequency baleen whale song, including: blue, pygmy blue, fin, Omura's, and minke whales. She is also involved in data collection for the beaked whale project.


Jessica McCordic

Jessica received a BA in Human Ecology from College of the Atlantic in 2012 and a MS in Biology from Syracuse University in 2015. After completing her graduate work on acoustic individuality in upcalls of North Atlantic right whales, she worked as a Research Biologist at Pacific Whale Foundation, where she curated photo-ID catalogs of North and South Pacific humpback whales and assisted with research projects on humpback whales and various odontocete species. Jessica joined our team as a research analyst in 2019, and her current work focuses on vessel compliance and soundscape characteristics in Australian Marine Parks. .

Former Group Members:

Grace Simpkins: (2012-2018) Grace helped develop our Coasts, Oceans, And STewardship (COAST) educational outreach program with the acoustics group and Woods Hole Sea Grant. She is currently a Sea Grant Educator with the Woods Hole Sea Grant Program, and continues to work with us to bring science to the classroom and community.


Dr. Joy Stanistreet: (2017. "Ecology of beaked whales and sperm whales in the western North Atlantic Ocean: Insights from passive acoustic monitoring." Marine Science and Conservation, Duke University) currently a PostDoc with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada at the Bedford Institute of Oceanography in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Dr. Heather Heenehan: (2016. "Soundscape Ecology of Hawaiian Spinner Dolphin Resting Bays." Marine Science and Conservation, Duke University) currently an upper school science teacher at Greens Farms Academy.

Dr. Trudi Webster: (2015. "Southern right whales: acoustic behavior and ambient noise." Marine Science and Zoology, University of Otago) currently a conservation science advisor at Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust.

Dr. Denise Risch: (2013. "Baleen whale acoustic ecology with focus on minke whales (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) and reference to anthropogenic noise". Zoology, University of Kiel) Denise was a senior bioacoustician with our group from 2006-2013 and is a currently a Postdoctoral Research Associate at The Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS).

Dr. Robert Valtierra: (2013. "Source localization of narrow band signals in multipath environments, with application to marine mammals". Mechanical Engineering Department, Boston University) after helping with many of our engineering queries, Rob has moved on, but not without leaving us some of his masterpieces.

Dr. Ilse van Opzeeland: (2010. "Acoustic ecology of marine mammals in polar oceans". Polar and Marine Research Ocean Acoustics Lab, Alfred Wegener Institute) current researcher at Alfred Wegener Institute.

Past Postdocs and Research Assistants:

Katharine Shelledy (2017-2019)
Logan Kline (2019)
Alyssa Scott (2019)
Sarah Weiss (2017-2019)
Julianne Bonnell (formerly Gurnee) (2015-2018)
John Luke Palka (2018)
Megan Slack (2018)
Christopher Tremblay (2015-2016)
Samara Haver (2011-2015)
Dr. Steven Brady (2013-2014)
Keith Hernandez (2011-2012)
Sarah Mussoline (2010-2012)
Joy Stanistreet (2009-2011)
Elizabeth Vu (2008-2009)
Jillian Vitacco (2010)

NOAA Hollings Scholarship Interns (http://www.noaa.gov/office-education/hollings-scholarship)

Logan Kline (Hollings Scholar Summer 2018)
Dawn Parry (Hollings Scholar Summer 2018)
Nicole Pegg (Hollings Scholar Summer 2018)
Zachary Pinard (Hollings Scholar Summer 2018)
Bridget Mueller-Brennan (Hollings Scholar Summer 2017)
Megan Sullivan (Hollings Scholar Summer 2017)
Sandra Dorning (Hollings Scholar Summer 2016)
Alyssa Scott (Hollings Scholar Summer 2016)
Katharine Shelledy (Hollings Scholar Summer 2016)
Daniel Woodrich (Hollings Scholar Summer 2015)
Julianne Gurnee (Hollings Scholar Summer 2013)
Julia Luthringer (Hollings Scholar Summer 2012)
Genevieve Davis (Hollings Scholar Summer 2010)
Keith Hernandez (Hollings Scholar Summer 2010)
Taryn Overton (Hollings Scholar Summer 2009)
Michelle McEachern (Hollings Scholar Summer 2009)
Amy Rhoads (Hollings Scholar Summer 2008)
Joy Stanistreet (Hollings Scholar Summer 2008)
Sarah Mussoline (Hollings Scholar Summer 2007)
Elizabeth Vu (Hollings Scholar Summer 2007)
Shonda Gaylord (Hollings Scholar Summer 2007)
Rachael Dickey (Hollings Scholar Summer 2006)
Charles White (Hollings Scholar Summer 2006)

PEP Program Interns (http://www.woodsholediversity.org/pep/)

Alisa Young (PEP Summer 2014)
Myya Jackson (PEP Summer 2012)
Danielle Rodriguez (PEP Summer 2012)
James Lewis (PEP Summer 2011)
Rachel Rochon (PEP Summer 2010)
Jordan Aoyama (PEP Summer 2009)


Caroline Reed (High school intern (2018 - 2019))
Natasha Heisenberg (High school intern (Summers 2018 & 2019))
Sarah Weiss (Fall 2016)
Sabena Siddiqui (Spring 2015)
Julianne Cossavella (Graduate intern 2014)
Kelly Simonson (Summer 2014)
Sam Hommand (Summer 2013)
Sarah Strobel (Summer 2011)
Samara Haver (2011)
Lauren Gentile (Summer 2011 and 2010)
Caitlin Waring (High school intern (2010 & 2011))
Jackie Koo (High school intern (2009 & 2010))
Gabriel Poritz (2009)
Andre Guerreiro da Silva (2008-2009)
Jackie Kiernan (2006-2007)
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