Danielle Marie Cholewiak

Danielle Marie Cholewiak
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration | NOAA · Northeast Fisheries Science Center, Protected Species Branch

PhD

About

71
Publications
17,753
Reads
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1,024
Citations
Citations since 2017
51 Research Items
886 Citations
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2017201820192020202120222023050100150200250
Introduction
Danielle Marie Cholewiak currently works at the Northeast Fisheries Science Center, Protected Species Branch, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Danielle does research in Animal Communication, Ecology and Zoology, primarily focusing on acoustic communication in cetaceans.
Additional affiliations
October 2010 - present
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Position
  • Biologist/ Bioacoustician
June 2008 - September 2010
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Position
  • PostDoc Position
September 2001 - May 2008
Cornell University
Position
  • PhD Student
Education
September 2001 - June 2008
Cornell University
Field of study
  • Bioacoustics Research Program, Laboratory of Ornithology
September 1993 - December 1998
University of Michigan
Field of study
  • School of Natural Resources - Natural Resource Management
September 1993 - December 1998
University of Michigan
Field of study
  • College of Literature, Science and Arts - Biology

Publications

Publications (71)
Article
Full-text available
The function of song has been well studied in numerous taxa and plays a role in mediating both intersexual and intrasexual interactions. Humpback whales are among few mammals who sing, but the role of sexual selection on song in this species is poorly understood. While one predominant hypothesis is that song mediates male–male interactions, the mec...
Article
Full-text available
The use of commercial echosounders for scientific and industrial purposes is steadily increasing. In addition to traditional navigational and fisheries uses, commercial sonars are used extensively for oceanographic research, benthic habitat mapping, geophysical exploration, and ecosystem studies. Little is known about the effects of these acoustic...
Article
Full-text available
Humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) employ a unique and complex foraging behaviour — bubble-netting — that involves expelling air underwater to form a vertical cylinder-ring of bubbles around prey. We used digital suction cup tags (DTAGs) that concurrently measure pitch, roll, heading, depth and sound (96 kHz sampling rate), to provide the fir...
Article
Full-text available
Consistent and well-defined criteria for the classification and measurement of humpback whale song features are essential for robust comparisons between investi- gators. Song structure terminology has been well-established and used by many authors, though at times inconsistently. This review discusses the development of the nomenclature describing...
Article
Beaked whales are deep divers, emitting echolocation clicks while at depth. Little is known about the dive behavior of most species; however, passive acoustic data collected with towed hydrophone arrays can provide depth information using multipath reflections of clicks coupled with a two-dimensional localization of the individual. Data were collec...
Presentation
No PDF available ABSTRACT Passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) is an efficient method for large-scale marine mammal monitoring. PAM technologies concurrently sample multiple soniferous marine mammal species, and when coupled with verified detectors, provide information that can be used to evaluate community composition. This analysis used data collec...
Article
Full-text available
The appropriate use and interpretation of passive acoustic data for monitoring the Critically Endangered North Atlantic right whale Eubalaena glacialis (hereafter right whale) rely on knowledge of their calling behavior and how it varies with respect to time, space, demographics, and observed behavior. To assess such relationships in a habitat of i...
Article
Full-text available
Sperm whales are an ideal species to study using passive acoustic technology because they spend the majority of their time underwater and produce echolocation clicks almost continuously while foraging. Passive acoustic line transect data collected between June and August 2016 were used to estimate a depth-corrected acoustic abundance and study the...
Article
Full-text available
The use of song as a reproductive display is common in the animal kingdom; however, for many taxa, little is known of song ontogeny. Male humpback whales produce elaborate songs on low latitude breeding grounds in winter and begin to sing on high latitude feeding grounds in late summer, yet songs from the two locations are rarely compared. Seasonal...
Chapter
It has been fifty years since Payne and McVay’s seminal publication on the strange and beautiful sounds of the humpback whaleHumpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliaeMegaptera novaeangliae), the study which inspired decades of research into their complex, underwater acoustic world. In the subsequent five decades, there probably have been more research...
Article
No PDF available ABSTRACT North Atlantic right whales (Eubalaena glacialis) are an endangered species of baleen whale found in high human use areas off the East Coast of the United States. Conservation efforts for this species include the use of passive acoustic monitoring to detect sounds produced by right whales to determine when they are present...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract available in English, Spanish and Portuguese. The deep sea has been described as the last major ecological frontier, as much of its biodiversity is yet to be discovered and described. Beaked whales (ziphiids) are among the most visible inhabitants of the deep sea, due to their large size and worldwide distribution, and their taxonomic div...
Article
Full-text available
Soundscape analyses provide an integrative approach to studying the presence and complexity of sounds within long-term acoustic data sets. Acoustic metrics (AMs) have been used extensively to describe terrestrial habitats but have had mixed success in the marine environment. Novel approaches are needed to be able to deal with the added noise and co...
Article
Within a soundscape, anthropogenic sound often dominates frequency ranges used by various species, leading to signal overlap and potential communication masking. The acoustic niche hypothesis predicts species will avoid competition by vocalizing at unique bandwidths. To evaluate the extent of anthropogenic overlap, it’s helpful to understand acoust...
Article
Many animals rely on long-form communication, in the form of songs, for vital functions such as mate attraction and territorial defence. We explored the prospect of improving automatic recognition performance by using the temporal context inherent in song. The ability to accurately detect sequences of calls has implications for conservation and bio...
Article
Blue whales Balaenoptera musculus in the Indian Ocean (IO) are currently thought to represent 2 or 3 subspecies ( B. m. intermedia, B. m. brevicauda , B. m. indica ), and believed to be structured into 4 populations, each with a diagnostic song-type. Here we describe a previously unreported song-type that implies the probable existence of a populat...
Article
Full-text available
Recent years have seen the rapid development of tools and approaches to model the population consequences of disturbance in several marine mammal populations from high-amplitude, acute sound sources. Ocean noise from shipping and other maritime activities is now recognised as a chronic, habitat-level stressor. Advances are needed in several key are...
Presentation
Convolutional neural networks (CNNs) are commonly employed for detecting animal vocalizations. We explored whether use of the temporal patterns in song notes can improve recognition. Fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus) produce sequences of low-frequency, down-swept calls (20 Hz pulses) over many minutes. Timing between calls can be exploited to impr...
Article
Full-text available
An amendment to this paper has been published and can be accessed via a link at the top of the paper.
Preprint
Full-text available
We present a learning-based method for extracting whistles of toothed whales (Odontoceti) in hydrophone recordings. Our method represents audio signals as time-frequency spectrograms and decomposes each spectrogram into a set of time-frequency patches. A deep neural network learns archetypical patterns (e.g., crossings, frequency modulated sweeps)...
Article
Full-text available
Six baleen whale species are found in the temperate western North Atlantic Ocean, with limited information existing on the distribution and movement patterns for most. There is mounting evidence of distributional shifts in many species, including marine mammals, likely because of climate‐driven changes in ocean temperature and circulation. Previous...
Article
Full-text available
Deep neural networks have advanced the field of detection and classification and allowed for effective identification of signals in challenging data sets. Numerous time-critical conservation needs may benefit from these methods. We developed and empirically studied a variety of deep neural networks to detect the vocalizations of endangered North At...
Article
No PDF available ABSTRACT Odontocete species use echolocation signals (clicks) to forage and navigate. The aim of this study is to explore inter- and intra-specific variation in clicks among odontocete species in the Northwest Atlantic, Temperate Pacific, and Hawaii. Clicks were examined for seven species of odontocetes—bottlenose dolphins, common...
Article
No PDF available ABSTRACT A typical wide-bandwidth passive acoustic seafloor sensor can record tens of millions of impulsive signals produced by biological, anthropogenic, and physical sources each year. Sources include echolocating toothed whales, snapping shrimp, ship propeller cavitation, echosounders, and weather. The volume and variety of dete...
Article
No PDF available ABSTRACT Making classification decisions on the basis of multiple calls from the same class (e.g., species) can reduce the classification error that is attributable to variance. In many cases, clustering acoustic signals from multiple classes on the basis of location information can allow for separation and simultaneous classificat...
Article
No PDF available ABSTRACT This paper presents a learning based method for detecting whistles of toothed whales from underwater hydrophone recordings. Our method represents audio signals as time-frequency spectrogram and employs the Fully Convolution Network (FCN) to estimate for each spectrogram a map of contour confidences that are used for extrac...
Article
The life history, distribution, and acoustic ecology of the sei whale (Balaenoptera borealis) in the western North Atlantic Ocean remains poorly understood. In this study an array of bottom-mounted recorders captured previously undocumented low frequency 50 to 30-Hz triplet and singlet down sweep vocalizations in close association with signature 82...
Article
True's beaked whales (Mesoplodon mirus) were encountered on two separate shipboard surveys on 24 July 2016 and 16 September 2017 in the western North Atlantic Ocean. Recordings were made using a hydrophone array towed 300 m behind the ship. In 2016, three different groups were sighted within 1500 m of the ship; clicks were recorded for 26 min. In 2...
Article
Biological acoustic signals are often produced in context. Contextual information includes things such as timing between calls, conspecific or interspecies cues, and physical environmental cues such as sunrise or sunset. We show how some forms of contextual information can be used to improve the results of detection and classification tasks for bio...
Article
Full-text available
Anthropogenic noise negatively impacts many species. One of the more insidious effects of elevated noise levels is the reduction in area over which animals are able to acoustically communicate, often termed communication masking. This study utilizes modeling approaches to evaluate relative levels of masking for 4 baleen whale species from the combi...
Article
Full-text available
The distribution and seasonal movements of sperm whales Physeter macrocephalus are poorly understood in the western North Atlantic Ocean, despite a long history of human exploitation of the species. Cetacean surveys in this region are typically conducted during the summer, when weather conditions are amenable for visual observation, resulting in a...
Poster
Full-text available
In September 2016, the West Indies distinct population segment (DPS) of humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae), was delisted under the US Endangered Species Act. This DPS covers all of the Caribbean breeding grounds. However, growing evidence suggests the West Indies DPS contains more than one breeding population. In response to these changes in...
Presentation
Baleen whales in the western North Atlantic Ocean have habitat ranges that overlap with areas of high anthropogenic activity, subjecting them to lethal threats including ship strike and entanglement in fishing gear. Understanding their seasonal occurrence and how this changes over time is critical for the conservation of these endangered species. D...
Article
Full-text available
Given new distribution patterns of the endangered North Atlantic right whale (NARW; Eubalaena glacialis) population in recent years, an improved understanding of spatio-temporal movements are imperative for the conservation of this species. While so far visual data have provided most information on NARW movements, passive acoustic monitoring (PAM)...
Article
Discrimination of bioacoustic signals to the species or population level is critical for using passive acoustic monitoring to study cetacean ecology. Risso's dolphins off southern California have distinctive peaks and notches in their echolocation clicks, but it was unknown whether Risso's dolphins from other geographic areas have similarly distinc...
Presentation
Omura’s whale is a recently described tropical Balaenopterid whale with virtually nothing known about their acoustic behavior. Recordings have revealed a stereotyped 15-50 Hz amplitude-modulated vocalization, rhythmically repeated in a typical Balaenoptera song manner. In order to describe the characteristics of the song, continuous recordings were...
Presentation
Beaked whales are cryptic, deep-diving odontocetes that are sensitive to anthropogenic noise. While their behavioral responses to navy sonar have been the subject of extensive study, little effort has been expended to evaluate their responses to other types of acoustic signals, such as fisheries echosounders. From 1 July to 10 August 2013, the Nort...
Presentation
Collaborative efforts across a large number of scientists working throughout the Western Atlantic Ocean has led to sharing of passive acoustic data spanning over a decade. These data allow for a 24/7 lens to be cast providing a long term temporal understanding of species presence. This collaborative approach has allowed for unprecedented research f...
Article
Little is known about the ecology of many beaked whale species, despite concerns raised by mass strandings linked to certain sources of anthropogenic noise. Here, we used passive acoustic monitoring to examine spatial and temporal patterns in beaked whale occurrence at six locations along the continental slope in the western North Atlantic Ocean. W...
Article
Odontocete species use echolocation signals (clicks) to forage and navigate. The aim of this study is to explore inter- and intra-specific variation in clicks among odontocete species in the Northwest Atlantic, Temperate Pacific, and Hawaii. Clicks were examined for seven species of delphinids in the western North Atlantic; common dolphin, Risso’s...
Article
Full-text available
Recent expansion in the capabilities of passive acoustic monitoring of sound-producing animals is providing expansive data sets in many locations. These long-term data sets will allow the investigation of questions related to the ecology of sound-producing animals on time scales ranging from diel and seasonal to inter-annual and decadal. Analyses o...
Presentation
Full-text available
In this talk, we introduce a method that exploits geospatial data to assess the spatially varying health of marine ecological communities and degree of human activity. Noise from shipping, energy development, and other human activity has become a significant component of marine soundscapes, resulting in changes to or loss of habitat and biodiversit...
Article
Full-text available
The U.S. Northeast Passive Acoustic Sensing Network (NEPAN) is composed of numerous passive acoustic recorders that provide archived and near-real-time data on acoustically active marine mammals and fish species. It currently stretches from the northern Gulf of Maine into the New York Bight within the northwest Atlantic Ocean. The recorders include...
Article
Full-text available
Of the 18 species of odontocetes known to be present in Hawaiian waters, small resident populations of 11 species-dwarf sperm whales, Blainville's beaked whales, Cuvier's beaked whales, pygmy killer whales, short-finned pilot whales, melonheaded whales, false killer whales, pantropical spotted dolphins, spinner dolphins, rough-toothed dolphins, and...
Presentation
Passive acoustics provide a flexible tool for developing understanding of the ecology and behavior of vocalizing marine animals. Yet despite a robust capacity for detecting species presence, our ability to estimate population abundance from acoustics still remains poor. Critically, abundance estimates are precisely what conservation practitioners a...
Presentation
The ability to classify odontocetes to species and population from acoustic recordings leads to improvements in stock identification, abundance and density estimation, and habitat-based density modeling, which are crucial for conservation and management. Risso's dolphins off Southern California have distinctive peaks and valleys in their echolocati...
Article
Several groups of Sowerby's beaked whales (Mesoplodon bidens) were encountered on July 4, 2011, during a shipboard cetacean survey conducted off the eastern seaboard of the United States. Acoustic recordings were collected using a three-element towed hydrophone array. Many echolocation clicks were recorded during the encounter, but no tonal sounds...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
A growing number of passive acoustic monitoring systems have resulted in a wealth of annotation information, or metadata, for recordings. These metadata are semi-structured. Some parameters are essentially mandatory (e.g., time of detection and what was detected) while others are highly dependent upon the question that a researcher is asking. Tethy...
Article
Full-text available
Multipath localization techniques have not previously been applied to baleen whale vocalizations due to difficulties in application to tonal vocalizations. Here it is shown that an autocorrelation method coupled with the direct reflected time difference of arrival localization technique can successfully resolve location information. A derivation wa...
Article
Full-text available
Hernandez, K. M., Risch, D., Cholewiak, D. M., Dean, M. J., Hatch, L. T., Hoffman, W. S., Rice, A. N., Zemeckis, D., and Van Parijs, S. M. 2013. Acoustic monitoring of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) in Massachusetts Bay: implications for management and conservation. – ICES Journal of Marine Science, 70: 628–635. Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) stocks in n...
Article
This project proposes a community standard for the representation of passive acoustic metadata along with a freely available software implementation. Our target audience is the marine mammal community, but the concepts are general and are applicable to a wide variety of taxa. In addition, we address the need to analyze acoustic metadata in the cont...
Article
The track and calling depths of a North Atlantic right whale (NARW) recorded by 10 bottom-mounted Autonomous Acoustic Recording Units (ARUs) in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary was determined using the Direct Reflected Time Difference of Arrival (DRTD) localization method. An autocorrelation technique was used to extract direct-reflect...
Article
Full-text available
Mating system theory predicts that differences between the sexes in potential reproductive rate and an operational sex ratio skewed strongly towards males should result in intense male competition, polygynous mating and high variance in male reproductive success. Accordingly, humpback whales are thought to be polygynous with differences in reproduc...
Article
Phenotypic selection in the snail species Campeloma decisum is found by observing characteristics such as an individual's size, growth rate, and ability to manipulate available resources. Populations of C. decisum, live and dead samples, were collected from both Douglas and Burt Lake. It is suggested that if only genetic drift is occurring, we shou...

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Projects (4)
Project
We use long-term passive acoustic recordings collected throughout the Northwest Atlantic Ocean to investigate the seasonal and spatial distributions of baleen whale species with known call types. Our primary goal is to better understand the distribution and seasonal occurrence of marine mammals throughout the Northeast United States. By combining long-term recordings, we can examine shifts in distribution and occurrence. We can also monitor how species may alter their behavior as a result of climate changes and human activities.