26 June 2013

Surveying robots and endangered marine life

Natural history surveying has evolved over time, from from boat-, land-based, and plane/helicopter surveys to current high technology robotics [1]. 

Underwater robots called gliders performing digital acoustic monitoring (DMON) deployed in late 2012 by a team of researchers from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) in the central Gulf of Maine captured baleen whale calls that were identified as those from North Atlantic right whales, an endangered species [2]. This tool overtakes the opportunistic sightings of old techniques, as it records unique whale calls and confirms their location through reconnaissance data with real-time updates.

These robots increased our capacity to discover more about the life history of difficult to observe animals to more than ten-fold and may help extend our knowledge of threatened large pelagic species like whales, dolphins, swordfishes and whalesharks.

To know more about marine endangered species visit SeaLifeBase.
[1]  Eberhardt, L.L.; Chapman, D.G.; Gilbert, J.R. (1979) A review of marine mammal census methods. Wildlife Monographs 63:3-46.

[2] Macroevolution.net (2013) Detecting endangered whales. http://www.macroevolution.net/marine-robots.html#.UagR55yP_YN [Accessed 31/05/2013].

Written by:

No comments:

Post a Comment

What do you think? Share your thoughts with us.