Making music from animal migrations

万博亚洲体育海洋科学前沿: Making music from elephant seal migrations - Carlos Duarte, Daniel Costa, Paul Riker

Data points individual elephant seals were transformed into the sound of a cello, with pitch and volume changing according to the position of the seals from one another. Image: Shutterstock

动物跟踪数据的首次转化为声音提供了深入了解 - 和令人惊讶的,快乐

— By艾玛·邓肯

这是什么动物大迁徙的声音是怎样的?没有噪音由动物本身制造,但每个人的运动投入music。White noise, discordant notes — or a coherent, harmonic symphony?

Anew studyby prominent marine researchers is the first to find out. The international team wanted a deeper understanding of elephant seal migration, particularly on their coordinated movements.

“Marine animals undertake amazing voyages across entireoceans,” explains卡洛斯·杜阿尔特博士从科学技术的沙特阿拉伯国王阿卜杜拉大学(KAUST)。“在所有的大迁徙的海洋动物,象海豹可以说是冠军 - 游泳的距离超过15000公里,潜水在寻找食物在超过1000米的深度。”

Scientists have long been interested in understanding how animals navigate at sea, both to avoid getting lost and to find each other in the vast wide ocean. While the development of tracking devices provided insights into the movements of individual animals, understanding the collective movements of a group remains a challenge.

“Our examination of individual migration trajectories suggested that elephant seals do not travel independently,” says Duarte. “Big-data接近跟踪多个动物不断涌现,但数据的大量难以分析。我们的跟踪研究,例如,从产生321个海象在四个方面超过10年的移动超过100万个职位“。


To transform the data points into sound, Riker assigned each animal to an instrument, a cello, with a different note. The pitch changed with the distance between the animal and the colony, while the spread of the group across the ocean was recorded as volume: louder when the animals were traveling closer together and softer as they swam further apart.

“I had no idea what it would sound like,” says Dr. Daniel Costa from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and a leading global expert on marine megafauna ecology. “I was quite surprised when the sounds were so interesting and pleasant to listen to.”

杜阿尔特也惊讶于结果。“我期待白噪声,随机的声音或可能像大海的声音,”他说。“但它竟然是美丽的 - 交响乐与模式,甚至情绪!”

Listen to the symphony


“The sonification inspired a number of hypotheses on the coordinated nature of the seals’ swimming that had not been explored before,” says Duarte. “Listening to the symphony makes us aware that there is pattern, coordination and even some drama — such as when an individual is left behind — in the way these animals explore a vast area of the ocean, where each seal is hundreds and even thousands of kilometers from its nearest companion.”

“It made us rethink whether the animals are coordinating their movements, or whether they are using a similar navigational cue,” adds Costa.

“学科之间的接口是其中最令人兴奋的研究做一个了不起的区域,”总结杜阿尔特。“我们的研究这个延伸到科学和艺术之间的相互作用。这个概念可以将数据转换成音乐是迷人的 - 甚至更多,以便它可以提供不只是科学洞察力,而且美的享受”


通讯作者:Carlos Duarte

重新发布指南:开放获取和分享研究的一部分Frontier的使命。当你有一个链接回原研只要 - 除非另有说明,您可以重新发布张贴在前沿的新闻博客文章。万博亚洲体育manbetx 手机客户端卖物品是不允许的。


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