Southall Environmental Associates, Inc.


Latest News! 

The SOCAL-15 Public Summary has been released.  Click here to view.

Using accelerometers to determine the calling behavior of tagged baleen whales
Low-frequency acoustic signals generated by baleen whales can propagate over vast distances, making the assignment of calls to specific individuals problematic. Here, we report the novel use of acoustic recording tags equipped with high-resolution accelerometers to detect vibrations from the surface of two tagged fin whales that directly match the timing of recorded acoustic signals.

The SOCAL-13 Final Report has been released.  Click here to view.

Ari S. Friedlaender et al (2014) – Feeding performance by sympatric blue whales exploiting a common prey resource
A major focus in macroecology is to understand the mechanisms that drive differences in habitat, morphology, and behavior in closely related species. Within this paradigm, energy use and prey acquisition play a fundamental role in affecting behavior, especially with respect to foraging patterns and predator-prey interactions.

Southall et al (2012) – Marine Mammal Behavioral Response Studies in Southern California: Advances in Technology and Experimental Methods
Behavioral response studies (BRS) are increasingly being conducted to better understand basic behavioral patterns in marine animals and how underwater sounds, including from human sources, can affect them. These studies are being enabled and enhanced by advances in both acoustic sensing and transmission technologies.

Jeremy A. Goldbogen et al (2013) – Underwater acrobatics by the world’s largest predator: 360° rolling manoeuvres by lunge-feeding blue whales
In this study we measured the three dimensional kinematics and foraging behaviour of blue whales feeding on krill, using suction-cup attached multi-sensor tags.

SOCAL-BRS Paper Published in Marine Technology Society Journal

The above article is for personal use only, and is not to be distributed in any format. The Marine Technology Society is a not-for-profit, international, professional association. Founded in 1963, the Society believes that the advancement of marine technology and the productive, sustainable use of the oceans depend upon the active exchange of ideas between government, industry and academia. See

“SOCAL‐BRS” (Behavioral Response Study) is a multi‐year effort (2010‐2015) to designed to better understand marine mammal behavior and reactions to sound. It is an interdisciplinary research collaboration, building on previous efforts in the Bahamas and Mediterranean Sea. The overall objective is to provide a better scientific basis for estimating risk and minimizing effects of active sonar for the U.S. Navy and regulatory agencies. SOCAL‐BRS is also part of a larger international collaboration to measure the impacts of noise marine mammals using opportunistic and experimental approaches (including controlled exposure experiments, or “CEEs”). SOCAL‐11 extends existing collaborations among scientists from private sector and academic scientists, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and U.S. Navy researchers and operational personnel. It is jointly funded by the U. S. Navy, Chief of Naval Operations, Environmental Readiness Division (OPNAV N45) and the Office of Naval Research (ONR).


SOCAL-BRS is a study of basic behavior and responses to controlled sound exposures in a variety of marine mammal species.

Southall Environmental Associates, Inc.

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