fish-cetacean publication (food) herring respond

From: Pita Admininstrator (
Date: Sat May 18 2002 - 08:58:34 EDT

The following recent publication may be of interest to some:

Ben Wilson and Lawrence M. Dill 2002 Pacific herring respond to simulated
odontocete echolocation sounds Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 59(3): 542-553

Abstract: There has been a long-running debate as to if and how clupeoid
fish, such as herring (Clupea sp.), respond to anthropogenic sound.
Anatomical and physiological investigations have shown that members of the
clupeoid suborder have highly developed hearing extending into ultrasonic
frequencies and behavioural studies suggest that they respond to many
sounds. However, only recently have the selective forces that have driven
the evolution of this keen sense and behavioural repertoire played a major
part in the debate. One explanation is the adaptation to predation from
echolocating cetaceans. In this study, we investigate the responses of
adult Pacific herring (Clupea pallasii) to broadband biosonar-type sounds
with high-frequency similarities to those produced by odontocete cetaceans.
Exposures to these sounds in an indoor tank and sea cage caused feeding
fish to cease, drop in the water column, and begin to school actively. Fish
already schooling dropped in the water column and increased their swimming
speed. Exposures to electronic silence and an acoustic deterrent device for
marine mammals did not elicit such responses. We discuss the potential
suitability of the observed manoeuvres for avoidance of foraging
odontocetes and consider their relevance for human-related fishing

Electronic (PDF style) reprints are available from the authors.
Ben Wilson <> & Larry Dill <>

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