Author: Abi Nighthill

Sea Sounds, Ship Strikes, and Cetacean Small Talk

A shuddering start, followed by a calculated growl. A rattling hiss that speeds away. A wayward clicking, the uncanny insect. A 1950s sci-fi siren of something strange and otherworldly.

A deep, booming thud.


The dull drone of a tanker passing through the Massachusetts Bay, lasting hours.

These are sounds of the sea, and they are human-made sounds. A motorboat, a Navy sonar’s shriek, the knock of oil exploration. After digging through this “acoustic smog,” one might occasionally hear the low whoop of a right whale’s up-call.

Southern Right Whale

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Category: bioacoustics, oceanography | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment