Accession Number : ADA289565

Title :   Quantitative Evaluation of Behavior of Marine Mammals: Behavioral Response to Acoustic Disturbance.

Descriptive Note : Progress rept.,

Corporate Author : WOODS HOLE OCEANOGRAPHIC INSTITUTION MA

Personal Author(s) : Tyack, Peter ; Watkins, William A.

PDF Url : ADA289565

Report Date : 14 NOV 1994

Pagination or Media Count : 3

Abstract : The student, Amy Samuels, is being supported to develop systematic observational protocols and quantitative methods for analyzing the behavior of cetaceans in order to provide quantitative baseline profiles of "normal" behavior and to identify reliable indicators of disturbance response. Research dedicated to identifying predictable patterns of normal behavior is essential for the design of robust disturbance experiments. During 1993-94, Samuels participated in 2 research cruises that were dedicated to study behavioral responses of sperm whales to disturbance in the form of acoustic playback. Samuels was responsible for developing an observational protocol to document systematically the non-vocal behavior of whales during undisturbed baseline conditions and during experimental sound playback conditions. Samuels' protocol represents the first use of quantitative behavioral sampling techniques in sperm whale research. A focal-animal sampling scheme was developed to focus on details of behavior of a whale targeted for playback (identifiable by tag or by distinctive physical features). A scan sampling scheme was developed to document more broadly the behavior of other whales in the vicinity. Behavioral parameters include at-surface duration, dive time, group size and cohesion, direction of travel, speed of travel, and details of behavior while at the surface. The protocol includes supplementation of visual observations by regularly-scheduled video samples of the focal whale's behavior; procedures for analysis of baseline vs. playback video clips are being devised.

Descriptors :   *MAMMALS, *ACOUSTICS, *BEHAVIOR, *RESPONSE(BIOLOGY), *WHALES, SCANNING, TEST AND EVALUATION, VELOCITY, SIZES(DIMENSIONS), PREDICTIONS, PARAMETERS, PHYSICAL PROPERTIES, TIME, RELIABILITY, PROFILES, BASE LINES, RESPONSE, SAMPLING, PATTERNS, TRAVEL, VISUAL PERCEPTION, INDICATORS, DIVING, COHESION, AQUATIC ANIMALS, DIRECTIONAL, BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES, CETACEA, PLAYBACK, SOUND REPRODUCTION SYSTEMS, VERBAL BEHAVIOR.

Subject Categories : Anatomy and Physiology
      Psychology
      Acoustics

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE