Subject: Abstract; Humpback songs

Mike Williamson (
Tue, 13 Jul 1999 09:05:43 -0400 (EDT)

Subject: Recent publication - JASA (FWD)

From: "Norris, Thomas F." <>

The following paper appears in the most recent issue of the Journal of the
Acoustic Society of America:

Norris, T. F.,  Mc Donald M. and Barlow J. 1998. Acoustic detections of
singing humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) in the eastern North
Pacific during their northbound migration. J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 106(1):

Numerous (84) acoustic detections of singing humpback whales were made
during a spring (8 March - 9 June 1997) research cruise to study sperm
whales in the central and eastern North Pacific.  Over 15,000 km of
track-line was surveyed acoustically using a towed hydrophone-array.
Additionally, 83 sonobuoys were deployed throughout the study area.
Detection rates were greatest in late March, near the Hawaiian Islands, and
in early April, northeast of the islands.  Only one detection was made after
April.  Detection rates for sonobuoys were unequal in three equally divided
longitudinal regions of the study area.  Two high density clusters of
detections occurred approximately 1200 - 2000 km northeast of the Hawaiian
Islands and were attributed to a large aggregation of migrating animals.
The distribution of these detections corroborates findings of previous
studies.  It is possible that these animals were maintaining acoustic
contact during migration. Two unexpected clusters of singing whales were
detected approximately 900 to 1,000 km. west of central and southern
California.  The location of these detections may indicate a previously
undocumented migration route between an offshore breeding area, such as the
Revillagigedo Islands, Mexico, and possible feeding areas in the western
North Pacific or Bering Sea.

Reprints will be available in the near future from the lead author.

Tom Norris
SAIC Maritime Services Division
3990 Old Town Ave.
Suite 105A
San Diego, CA 92110

tel:  (619) 294-8380
fax: (619) 294-8795

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