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Sei Whale Vocalizations

Long distance passive localization of sei whales on the North American continental shelf
During a 2 day period in mid-September 2006, more than 200, unconfirmed but identifiable, sei whale (Balaenoptera borealis) calls were collected as incidental data during a multidisciplinary oceanography and acoustics experiment on the shelf off New Jersey. Using a combined vertical and horizontal acoustic receiving array, sei whale movements were tracked over long distances (up to tens of kilometers) using a normal mode back propagation technique.

During that last few days of the SW06 expt our 48 element vla/hla was measuring ambient noise only. We noticed some receptions that did not come from our sources or any other anthropogenic noise. We confirmed that they are an assortment of marine mammal vocalizations, and confirmed presence in earlier data.

Spectogram of sei whale signals

The spectogram above shows a double and a single vocalization from a sei whale.

Audio files of the double signal from the above spectogram

The back propagation localization is seen in the above plot

The above image shows our localization plotted over the temperature of the water at 30 m (in color). The red thumb-like feature is a warm, salty intrusion. Two individual whales were followed from the lower left part of the area to the edge of the intrusion. Another was followed from the upper center part of the area to the same location at the same time. They were seen there for some time then all left together, going in a NW direction from the intrusion.

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Last updated: July 26, 2017

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