Vocalizations produced by southern right whale (Eubalaena australis) mother-calf pairs in a calving ground off Brazil

Julia R G Dombroski, Susan E Parks, Karina R. Groch, Paulo A C Flores, Renata S. Sousa-Lima

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Aiming to gather information on southern right whale (Eubalaena australis) mother-calf pairs' vocal behavior, archival acoustic recorders were deployed at a calving area off Brazil. Manual inspection of spectrograms revealed seven call classes: upcall, downcall, down-upcall, tonal variable, tonal constant, hybrid, and pulsive calls, which are consistent with those previously described for this species in Argentina. Gunshots and warbles, vocalizations described from other right whale species, were not detected. Mean values of start, end, maximum, minimum and peak frequencies, frequency bandwidth and duration were calculated for each call class. Start and end frequencies, frequency bandwidth and duration of upcalls recorded off Brazil were compared to those from other right whale populations and species. Only mean duration of upcalls from Brazil were significantly different from upcalls from all other populations. Differences in call duration may be driven by differences in demographic factors or background noise features among study areas. The repertoire characterization presented in this study will contribute to increase the utility of passive acoustic monitoring as a tool for conservation and research of southern right whales off Brazil as it provides important baseline information on the vocal behavior of this species.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1850-1857
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Volume140
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics

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