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Davis, GE, Baumgartner MF, Bonnell JM, Bell J, Berchok C, Thornton JB, Brault S, Buchanan G, Charif RA, Cholewiak D, Clark CW, Corkeron P, Delarue J, Dudzinski K, Hatch L, Hildebrand J, Hodge L, Klinck H, Kraus S, Martin B, Mellinger DK, Moors-Murphy H, Nieukirk S, Nowacek DP, Parks S, Read AJ, Rice AN, Risch D, Sirovic A, Soldevilla M, Stafford K, Stanistreet JE, Summers E, Todd S, Warde A, Van Parijs SM.  2017.  Long-term passive acoustic recordings track the changing distribution of North Atlantic right whales (Eubalaena glacialis) from 2004 to 2014. Scientific Reports. 7   10.1038/s41598-017-13359-3   AbstractWebsite

Given new distribution patterns of the endangered North Atlantic right whale (NARW; Eubalaena glacialis) population in recent years, an improved understanding of spatio-temporal movements are imperative for the conservation of this species. While so far visual data have provided most information on NARW movements, passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) was used in this study in order to better capture year-round NARW presence. This project used PAM data from 2004 to 2014 collected by 19 organizations throughout the western North Atlantic Ocean. Overall, data from 324 recorders (35,600 days) were processed and analyzed using a classification and detection system. Results highlight almost year-round habitat use of the western North Atlantic Ocean, with a decrease in detections in waters off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina in summer and fall. Data collected post 2010 showed an increased NARW presence in the mid-Atlantic region and a simultaneous decrease in the northern Gulf of Maine. In addition, NARWs were widely distributed across most regions throughout winter months. This study demonstrates that a large-scale analysis of PAM data provides significant value to understanding and tracking shifts in large whale movements over long time scales.

Dominello, T, Širović A.  2016.  Seasonality of Antarctic minke whale (Balaenoptera bonaerensis) calls off the western Antarctic Peninsula. Marine Mammal Science. 32:826-838.   10.1111/mms.12302   AbstractWebsite

The Antarctic minke whale (Balaenoptera bonaerensis) is a difficult species to study because of its low visual detectability and preference for living within the sea ice habitat, accessible only by ice-strengthened vessels. Recent identification of the Antarctic minke whale as the source of the seasonally ubiquitous bio-duck call has allowed the use of this sound, as well as downsweeps, to investigate seasonality trends and diel patterns in Antarctic minke whale call production, and their relationship to sea ice cover. Passive acoustic data were collected using an autonomous Acoustic Recording Package (ARP) off the western Antarctic Peninsula. Bio-duck calls were classified into four distinct call variants, with one variant having two subtypes. Bio-duck calls were detected between April and November, with increasing call duration during the austral winter, indicating a strong seasonality in call production. Downsweeps, which were also attributed to Antarctic minke whales, were present throughout most months during the recording period, with a peak in July, and an absence in March and April. Both bio-duck and downsweeps were significantly correlated with sea ice cover. No diel patterns were observed in bio-duck calls or in downsweep call production at this site.