| "Some people talk to animals. Not many listen though. That's the problem."
Northeast Acoustic Network (NEPAN)
Our passive acoustic research group, together with valued collaborators and colleagues, has built what we call the US NorthEast Passive Acoustic sensing Network (NEPAN). NEPAN is a compilation of all current and near term passive acoustic projects that will be taking part in the Northeast US from 2014 - 2017.
These projects showcase a 'coming of age' or 'maturity' of passive acoustic technologies and its applications for conservation science and management. Given that NOAA does not direct any core funding towards passive acoustic research, these projects can be seen as a whole but originate through separately funded, competitive research programs and involve many partners (see below).
The following research projects currently make up NEPAN:
Region: The US Northeast Gulf of Maine and the New York Bight
Aims: Collect near real time information on the acoustic presence of:
Partners: Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, NAVFAC, NY State
Funders: DOD ESTCP, US Navy LMR, NOAA Office of Protected Resources
Real time data collection for mitigation of potential impacts on right whales
Region: Nantucket Sound
Aims: A real time mooring will be established to monitor the area in and around a US Coastguard gunnery range. The intent is to use this near- real time detection information as a management tool so that the Coastguard can view the website and decide whether or not to carry out an exercise depending on whether North Atlantic right whales have been acoustically detected or not.
Partners: Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, US Coastguard
Funders: US Coastguard
Mapping Atlantic cod spawning grounds
Region: Massachusetts Bay
Aims: Our passive acoustic work complements acoustic tagging work done by Massachusetts Department of Marine Fisheries (MASS DMF) who place tags in individual cod. These tags send high frequency acoustic pings and are heard by bottom-mounted receivers each time a tagged cod passes through the area. We are using bottom-mounted passive acoustic recorders to listen for and to define the seasonal extent of the spawning season. In addition, electrical gliders will follow line transects through the area listening both for the presence of cod spawning grunts and acoustic pings from tagged cod.
Partners: : MASS Department of Marine Fisheries, SMAST, TNC, NOAA Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Funders: NMFS Co-operative Research Grant, NOAA Saltonstall-Kennedy
Archival long term passive acoustic monitoring for baleen and odontocete whales
Region: Georges Bank, Gulf of Maine, Mid Atlantic, Southeast US
Aims: We will focus on collecting long term seasonal occurrence data for baleen whales and odontocetes throughout key areas on the shelf, as well as on the shelf break. A variety of bottom mounted recorders will be used depending on the objective (i.e. low or high frequency monitoring or both). On the shelf, we will focus on baleen whale presence and their distance from shore while migrating. Off the shelf, we will focus on occurrence of sperm and beaked whales primarily as well as baleen whales and other odontocete species.
Partners: Cornell University, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, JASCO Ltd
Funders: BOEM, US Navy N45