| "Some people talk to animals. Not many listen though. That's the problem."
Baleen Whale Migration and Distribution Patterns
Distribution and seasonal occurrence throughout the Northeast U.S.
In collaboration with colleagues who have been working throughout the Northwest Atlantic seaboard, a comprehensive data set was created. Available archival passive acoustic data were brought together to better understand the acoustic presence of the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale (NARW); how their movements have changed; and where we should focus future research and management efforts.
Recordings were collected (from four different types of bottom-mounted recorders) and combined from 19 different organizations between 2004-2014. Using a detector built by Mark Baumgartner (see Baumgartner & Mussoline 2011), verified North Atlantic right whale upcalls were used to determine acoustic presence. The data were divided into regions based on geographical and biological relevance, and split into two time periods reflecting the witnessed NARW distribution shift in 2010 (figure 2). Results are published in Nature Scientific Reports, Davis et al. 2017
|Recording Platforms |
|MARU (Cornell)||HARU (NOAA PMEL)|
These data can provide novel insights into species movements over time, in places that are otherwise hard to observe and monitor visually. A subset of these data were used previously to understand seasonal migrations of the North Atlantic minke whale (Risch et al. 2014). Results described temporal and spatial distributions, including how close to shore minke whales travel (figure 4) along the eastern seaboard. Our goal is to perform this same type of analysis for four other species of baleen whales (sei whale, fin whale, blue whale, and humpback whale). In addition to improving our baseline information on species distributions, we can also compare movements of species to see if they are shifting over time (figure 3).
- Kate Stafford- University of Washington (Data: Davis Straight)
- Dave Mellinger & Sharon Nieukirk- Oregon State University (Data: Scotian Shelf, Iceland/Greenland)
- Hilary Moors-Murphy- Fisheries and Oceans Canada (Data: Scotian Shelf)
- Susan Parks- Syracuse University (Data: Bay of Fundy)
- Erin Summers- Maine Department of Marine Resources (Data: Gulf of Maine)
- Jackie Bort Thornton & Sean Todd- NAVFAC/College of the Atlantic (Data: Gulf of Maine)
- NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center
- Scott Kraus- New England Aquarium (Data: Southern New England)
- Bruce Martin & Julien Delarue- JASCO Applies Sciences (Data: Nantucket Sound, Delaware Bay)
- Gary Buchanan- New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (Data: New Jersey)
- Chris Clark, Aaron Rice, & Holger Klinck- Cornell University (Data: New York, Virginia, Southeast US)
- Melissa Soldevilla- NOAA SEFSC (Data: Southeast US)
- Andy Read, Doug Nowacek, & Joy Stanistreet- Duke University (Data: Cape Hatteras, Southeast US)
- Joel Bell- NAVFAC (Data: Southeast US)
- John Hildebrand & Ana Sirovic- Scripps Institution of Oceanogaphy, UC San Diego (Data: Southeast US, Bermuda)
- Catherine Berchok- NOAA Alaska Fisheries Science Center (Data: Dominican Republic)