Noise exposure and vocal behaviour of baleen whales off the Azores
- NomeMiriam Romagosa Verges
- Entidade de acolhimentoCentro Okeanos
The goals of this study are to understand how environmental variables and anthropogenic noise affect the presence and timing of migration of three endangered baleen whale species: blue, fin and sei whales (IUCN 2014) in the Azores archipelago, and to establish acoustic parameters critical for density estimation of these species using passive acoustic data. These objectives will be achieved through a multidisciplinary approach that integrates innovative passive acoustic techniques, land-based visual observations, animal tagging technology and biological sampling. Results from this work will provide a better understanding on migration and movements of these three species in central Atlantic waters, on the environmental and anthropogenic variables influencing their distribution and habitat use, on the potential masking effects of noise in whale communication, and will improve efficiency of passive acoustics to monitoring and risk mitigation efforts. This way, the project perfectly aligns with the RIS3 strategy by placing the Azores as a privileged spot for acquiring ocean knowledge, reinforcing external links, improving monitoring of marine species and heading towards the sustainable exploration of marine resources that ultimately brings great socio-economic benefits to the Azores.