Underwater noise is an increasingly-scrutinized issue in marine environments. Research on the effects of noise on marine life is still in its early stages but regulations from state and federal agencies are getting stricter due to recent discoveries. Here are some articles detailing recent findings.
“Whales, Somehow, Are Coping With Humans’ Din”
Scientists have long known that man-made, underwater noises — from engines, sonars, weapons testing, and such industrial tools as air guns used in oil and gas exploration — are deafening whales and other sea mammals. The Navy estimates that loud booms from just its underwater listening devices, mainly sonar, result in temporary or permanent hearing loss for more than a quarter-million sea creatures every year, a number that is rising… [Read More]
“Seismic stress for whales”
When shipping was stopped in Canada’s Bay of Fundy following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack on New York City, few could have predicted the positive impact it would have on the struggling population of northern right whales. As shipping was stopped and the waters stilled along the Atlantic coast of North America, there was a dramatic shift in results of long-term testing of the region’s whales. It was the first evidence that constant exposure to low-frequency ship noise may cause chronic stress in whales, with potentially devastating consequences for reproduction… [Read More]