Denise Risch

Denise Risch
Scottish Association for Marine Science · Ecology

PhD Zoology

About

68
Publications
23,471
Reads
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1,383
Citations
Additional affiliations
July 2020 - present
Scottish Association for Marine Science
Position
  • Lecturer
July 2014 - July 2020
Scottish Association for Marine Science
Position
  • PostDoc Position
July 2007 - June 2014
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Position
  • Senior Bioacoustician/PhD Student

Publications

Publications (68)
Article
Full-text available
Humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) produce song and non-song vocalisations, which allows their presence to be detected through passive acoustic monitoring. To determine the seasonal and diel acoustic presence and acoustic behaviour of humpback whales at the migratory stopover site off Bermuda, three hydrophones were deployed between March 201...
Article
Full-text available
The characterisation of marine soundscapes allows observation of spatiotemporal distribution of vocalising species and human activities, which can inform an assessment of their interactions. Such data are important for monitoring the ecological status of marine habitats. The Scottish Atlantic Frontier is an important habitat for a variety of cetace...
Article
Full-text available
1. Archived logbooks detailing landings at Scottish shore-based whaling stations between 1903 and 1951 were used to map whale catch locations. Historical distribution and occurrence are inferred and summary statistics on total landings are updated for blue (Balaenoptera musculus), fin (Balaenoptera physalus), humpback (Megaptera novaeangliae), Nort...
Chapter
The acoustic behavior of minke whaleMinke whale populations worldwide has been a mystery for the better part of the twentieth century. Several likely biological sound sources such as the ‘boing’‘boing’ recorded in the North Pacific, or the ‘bio-duck’‘bioduck’ with its ubiquitous distribution in the Southern Ocean, had been described by seafarers si...
Article
Soundscapes have substantially changed since the industrial revolution and in response to biodiversity loss and climate change. Human activities such as shipping, resource exploration and offshore construction alter natural ecosystems through sound, which can impact marine species in complex ways. The study of underwater sound is multi-disciplinary...
Article
Full-text available
1. Pinniped depredation at aquaculture sites is a globally recognized problem. To mitigate depredation, the aquaculture sector uses acoustic deterrent devices (ADDs) as a non-lethal alternative to shooting pinnipeds interacting with caged finfish. However, it is unclear whether sound emissions from ADDs have the potential to also impact non-target...
Article
Full-text available
Anthropogenic underwater noise has been identified as a potentially serious stressor for the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale (NARW). The Government of Canada is undertaking steps to better characterize the noise sources of most concern and their associated impacts, but there is currently an insufficient understanding of which noise...
Article
This review provides a critical, multi-faceted assessment of the practical contribution tidal stream energy can make to the UK and British Channel Islands future energy mix. Evidence is presented that broadly supports the latest national-scale practical resource estimate, of 34 TWh/year, equivalent to 11% of the UK’s current annual electricity dema...
Article
Full-text available
Aquaculture and marine renewable energy are two expanding sectors of the Blue Economy in Europe. Assessing the long-term environmental impacts in terms of eutrophication and noise is a priority for both the EU Water Framework Directive and the Marine Strategy Framework Directive, and cumulative impacts will be important for the Maritime Spatial Pla...
Article
Full-text available
This study compares the noise levels at the cold-water coral Tisler reef, before and after the closure of the border between Norway and Sweden, which occurred as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Tisler reef is a marine protected area located under a ferry “highway” that connects Norway and Sweden. Cold-water coral reefs are recognised...
Article
This paper proposes a robust system for detecting North Atlantic right whales by using deep learning methods to denoise noisy recordings. Passive acoustic recordings of right whale vocalisations are subject to noise contamination from many sources, such as shipping and offshore activities. When such data are applied to uncompensated classifiers, ac...
Article
Full-text available
1. Management interventions to reduce human-wildlife conflict can have unintended consequences for non-target species. Acoustic deterrent devices (ADDs) are used globally by the aquaculture sector. However, the potential for these sound emissions to impact non-target species, such as cetaceans, has not yet been quantified at population relevant spa...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This report presents an analysis of approaches to mitigation of environmental impacts of offshore wind on protected sites and species in the UK. Significant expansion of offshore wind is needed to achieve net zero targets including 40 GW of electricity production from offshore wind by 2030. Offshore wind presents risk of environmental impacts, incl...
Article
Full-text available
Habitat use by the endangered Mediterranean sperm whale subpopulation remains poorly understood, especially in winter. The sustained presence of oceanographic autonomous underwater vehicles in the area presents an opportunity to improve observation effort, enabling collection of valuable sperm whale distribution data, which may be crucial to their...
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
The underwater sound emitted during the operation of the Atlantis AR1500 turbine, a 1.5 MW three bladed horizontal axis tidal-stream turbine, was measured in the Pentland Firth, Scotland. Most sound was concentrated in the lower frequencies, ranging from 50 to 1000 Hz. Within 20 m of the turbine, third-octave band sound pressure levels were elevate...
Article
Full-text available
Minke whales comprise some of the most widely distributed species of baleen whales, some populations of which are still regularly targeted by commercial whaling. Here, we review the conservation status of common (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) and Antarctic (Balaenoptera bonaerensis) minke whale populations, against the backdrop of ongoing whaling ope...
Article
Full-text available
Despite frequent records from other parts of the North Atlantic, minke whales have never been acoustically recorded in the North Sea. This study investigated the detectability of pulse trains previously associated with this species in other regions, in acoustic data from ten sites along the east coast of Scotland. Since preliminary results confirme...
Article
Within the aquatic environment acoustic monitoring systems are widely used to monitor and assesses anthropogenic noise sources and potential impacts on many aquatic species. Passive acoustic studies are, however, often limited to acoustic observation of changes in the species vocalization. Changes in vocalizations such as vocal calls or use of echo...
Article
Full-text available
Acoustic deterrent devices (ADDs) are used in attempts to mitigate pinniped depredation on aquaculture sites through the emission of loud and pervasive noise. This study quantified spatio-temporal changes in underwater ADD noise detections along western Scotland over 11 years. Acoustic point data (‘listening events’) collected during cetacean line-...
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...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The ECCLR Committee is carrying out this work in advance of the Rural Economy and Connectivity (REC) Committee’s forthcoming inquiry on aquaculture in Scotland, the terms of reference for which will be considered in the coming weeks. The ECCLR Committee’s focus is the report commissioned by SPICe and undertaken by SAMS Research Services Ltd (SRSL)....
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)...
Technical Report
The use of active high frequency echo sounders for commercial activities and marine research has been increasing in recent years. Compared to other anthropogenic noise sources, high frequency echo sounders have received little attention in terms of their potential impacts on marine life. However, while these devices typically operate at centre freq...
Article
Global marine and freshwater ecosystems are experiencing an unprecedented loss and re-distribution of biodiversity, due to far reaching effects of human activities, including accelerated climate change and over-exploitation. Such changes in aquatic diversity patterns will lead to shifting baselines with respect to species richness and distribution,...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Tidal-stream turbines are a promising source of renewable electricity worldwide. These technologies are sufficiently new that only single test devices have been deployed with arrays imminent. Being new, their interactions with marine organisms are poorly understood and the risk of large marine vertebrates colliding with their moving blades is a con...
Chapter
In terrestrial ecosystems, spatial heterogeneity in landscape features drives species dispersal and distribution through local and regional processes. This chapter reviews the use of traditional and newly developed ecoacoustic approaches to monitor the three soundscape components (biotic, abiotic, and anthropogenic) in different freshwater and mari...
Poster
Full-text available
It has been shown that pile-driving sound for offshore wind farm foundations can affect harbor porpoises and harbor seals at considerable distances from the source. As pile driving reaches comparably high sound pressure levels at mainly low frequencies, there is also a high potential to affect low-frequency cetaceans such as baleen whales as well....
Technical Report
Full-text available
The Antillean Island chain is a known breeding and calving ground for North Atlantic humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae). However, while most research efforts for this species have focused on the largest aggregation of whales, located on Silver Bank, off the northern coast of the Dominican Republic, there are still significant knowledge gaps w...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The construction and operation of marine renewable energy developments (MREDs) will lead to, among other things, the emission of electromagnetic fields (EMF), underwater sound, and vibrations into the marine environment. Knowledge on these pressures and associated effects has been increasing over the past decade. Yet, many open questions with regar...
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...
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
Little is known about migration patterns and seasonal distribution away from coastal summer feeding habitats of many pelagic baleen whales. Recently, large-scale passive acoustic monitoring networks have become available to explore migration patterns and identify critical habitats of these species. North Atlantic minke whales (Balaenoptera acutoros...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper presents a new software model designed for distributed sonic signal detection runtime using machine learning algorithms called DeLMA. A new algorithm-Acoustic Data-mining Accelerator (ADA)-is also presented. ADA is a robust yet scalable solution for efficiently processing big sound archives using distributing computing technologies. Toge...
Article
Full-text available
For decades, the bio-duck sound has been recorded in the Southern Ocean, but the animal producing it has remained a mystery. Heard mainly during austral winter in the Southern Ocean, this ubiquitous sound has been recorded in Antarctic waters and contemporaneously off the Australian west coast. Here, we present conclusive evidence that the bio-duck...
Article
Information on individual calling behaviour and source levels are important for understanding acoustically mediated social interactions of marine mammals, for which visual observations are difficult to obtain. Our study, conducted in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary (SB- NMS), located in the Gulf of Maine, USA, used passive acoustic ar...
Article
Full-text available
Background - Little is known about migration patterns and seasonal distribution away from coastal summer feeding habitats of many pelagic baleen whales. Recently, large-scale passive acoustic monitoring networks have become available to explore migration patterns and identify critical habitats of these species. North Atlantic minke whales (Balaenop...
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
Passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) is a rapidly growing field, providing valuable insights in marine ecology. The approach allows for long-term, species-specific monitoring over a range of spatial scales. For many baleen whales fundamental information on seasonal occurrence and distribution is still missing. In this study, pulse trains produced by t...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper, we propose a method to improve sound classification performance by combining signal features, derived from the time-frequency spectrogram, with human perception. The method presented herein exploits an artificial neural network (ANN) and learns the signal features based on the human perception knowledge. The proposed method is applie...
Article
Full-text available
The following work outlines an approach for automatic detection and recognition of periodic pulse train signals using a multi-stage process based on spectrogram edge detection, energy projection and classification. The method has been implemented to automatically detect and recognize pulse train songs of minke whales. While the long term goal of th...
Data
Full-text available
Passive acoustic tracking provides an unobtrusive method of studying the movement of sound-producing animals in the marine environment where traditional tracking methods may be costly or infeasible. We used passive acoustic tracking to characterize the fine-scale movements of singing humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) on a northwest Atlantic...
Article
Full-text available
Passive acoustic tracking provides an unobtrusive method of studying the movement of sound-producing animals in the marine environment where traditional tracking methods may be costly or infeasible. We used passive acoustic tracking to characterize the fine-scale movements of singing humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) on a northwest Atlantic...
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
Full-text available
Ship strikes are a major cause of anthropogenic mortality for the endangered North Atlantic right whale Eubalaena glacialis. Year-round data on animal presence are critical to man- aging ship strike mortality. Marine autonomous recording units were deployed throughout the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary (SBNMS, Massachusetts Bay, USA) for...
Article
Full-text available
Male humpback whales produce complex, patterned songs that are traditionally heard on their breeding grounds. Short-term studies demonstrated that they also sing along mi - gration routes and on higher-latitude feeding grounds. This study expands the current understanding of feeding-ground song by providing yearlong views of singing activity. Acous...
Article
Full-text available
The effect of underwater anthropogenic sound on marine mammals is of increasing concern. Here we show that humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) song in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary (SBNMS) was reduced, concurrent with transmissions of an Ocean Acoustic Waveguide Remote Sensing (OAWRS) experiment approximately 200 km away. We det...
Data
Time series of hourly detections of OAWRS signals recorded on MARUs deployed in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary in September/October 2006. (TIF)