[MARMAM] Beaked and killer whales show how collective prey behaviour foils acoustic predators

Natacha naguilar at ull.edu.es
Sat Apr 21 04:10:08 PDT 2018

Dear colleagues,

See below a link to a prepublished version of this paper, now in review in
eLife, this version is freely available,


This is the abstract:

Animals aggregate to obtain a range of fitness benefits, but a common cost
aggregation is increased detection by predators. Here we show that, in
contrast to visual
and chemical signallers, aggregated acoustic signallers need not face
higher predator
encounter rate. This is the case for prey groups that synchronize vocal
behaviour but
have negligible signal time-overlap in their vocalizations. Beaked whales
tagged with
sound and movement loggers exemplify this scenario: they precisely
synchronize group
vocal and diving activity but produce non-overlapping short acoustic cues.
combine this with acoustic hiding when within reach of eavesdropping
predators to
effectively annul the cost of aggregation for predation risk from their
main predator, the
killer whale. We generalize this finding in a mathematical model that
predicts the key
parameters that social vocal prey, which are widespread across taxa and
can use to mitigate detection by eavesdropping predators.

Cheers, we hope you enjoy seeing the amazing coordinated behaviour of
beaked whales!


Natacha Aguilar de Soto, PhD
Research Fellow
BIOECOMAC (Marine Biodiversity, Ecology and Conservation)
University of La Laguna
Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spainnaguilar at ull.edu.es <naguilar at ull.es> /
922 318324-87 / 636876526

Visiting Scholar
Scottish Marine Institute.
UUniversity of St Andrews. Scotland. UK
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