Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Noisey Belugas

Well November has been a busy month.
During the first 2 weeks, Aran traveled to Mystic Aquarium to work with Tracy Romano and Laura Thompson (both of Mystic Aquarium) and Manuel Castellote (of NOAA's National Marine Mammal Lab) to study the hearing of belugas when they are "masked" but noise from ships or pile driving (pier construction). These sounds were recorded in Cook Inlet, there there is an endangered (and declining) population of beluga whales. The work was fantastic. We worked with trainers Kate and Kathryn, and the whale Kela. The studies and results address how even low levels of noise may make it harder for these whales to hear their biologically relevant sounds and reflects the needed concern around this acoustic stressor.

Aran, Manolo, Kate and Kathryn working with Kela the beluga.