[MARMAM] New publication on fin whale song in Davis Strait
Malene J. Simon
MaSi at natur.gl
Thu Dec 2 08:41:00 PST 2010
Dear Marmam subscribers
The following paper has just been published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. For further details please contact Malene Simon, MaSi at natur.gl <mailto:MaSi at natur.gl> .
Simon M, Stafford KM, Beedholm K, Lee CM and Madsen P.T. 2010. Singing behavior of fin whales in the Davis Strait with implications for mating, migration and foraging. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. 128(5): 3200-3210.
Most baleen whales undertake migrations between low-latitude breeding grounds and high-latitude feeding grounds. Though little is known about the timing of their migration from the Arctic, fin whales are assumed to undertake a similar migratory pattern. To address questions about habitat use and migrations, the acoustic activity of fin whales in Davis Strait, between Greenland and Canada, was monitored continuously for two years using three bottom-moored acoustic recorders. The acoustic power in the fin whale call frequencies peaked in November-December, showing that fin whales are present in Davis Strait much later in the year than previously expected. The closely timed peaks in song activity and conception time imply that not all fin whales migrate south to mate, but rather start mating at high latitudes rather than or before migrating. Singing activity was strongly linked to daylight hours, suggesting that fin whales might feed during the few daylight hours of the late fall and early Arctic winter. A negative correlation between the advancing sea ice front and power in fin whale frequencies indicates that future changes in sea ice conditions from global warming might change the distribution and migratory patterns of fin whales near the poles.
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