North Atlantic right whale up-calls in Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary 2006-2007
NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center (NEFSC)

Dataset credit

Sofie Van Parijs, NOAA NEFSC

Genevieve Davis, NOAA NEFSC


Primary contact Sofie Van Parijs NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center
Data entry Ei Fujioka Duke University


Van Parijs, S. 2013. North Atlantic right whale up-calls in Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary 2006-2007. Data downloaded from OBIS-SEAMAP ( on yyyy-mm-dd.


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 managingship strike mortality. Marine autonomous recording units were deployed throughout the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary (SBNMS, Massachusetts Bay, USA) for 13 months from January 2006 to February 2007 and on Jeffreys Ledge (JL, Gulf of Maine, USA) for 7 months from November 2004 to May 2005 to determine whether passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) can improve information on right whale occurrence. Automated detection and manual review were used to determine presence and absence of right whale up-calls. In the SBNMS, up-calls were
detected year round, except during July and August, and calling rates were highest from January through May, peaking in April. In JL, up-calls occurred throughout all recording months, with the highest numbers from November through February. Up-calls were heard extensively in the wintertime throughout the SBNMS and JL, suggesting that these areas are important overwintering grounds for right whales. Additionally, up-calls showed a strong diel trend in both areas, with significantly more calls occurring during twilight than dark and light periods. These data indicate
that right whales are present more often and over longer time periods in the western Gulf of Maine than previously thought using conventional visual techniques. Finally, this study demonstrates the utility of PAM in providing a detailed and long-term picture of right whale presence in an area that poses a significant risk of anthropogenic mortality.



Supplemental information

This dataset contains SBNMS data only.




Attributes described below represent those in the original dataset provided by the provider.
Only minimum required attributes are visible and downlodable online. Other attributes may be obtained upon provider's permission unless otherwise noted below.

This section explains attributes included in the original dataset. OBIS-SEAMAP restricts the attributes available to the public to date/time, lat/lon and species names/counts only. Should you need other attributes described here, you are encouraged to contact the data provider.

Attributes in dataset provided

Attribute (table column)Description
oidUnique ID (created by OBIS-SEAMAP)
date_origDate in original format
obs_dateDate recorded
program_verProgram version
min_to_make_rfMin to make RF
view_minView Min
n_in_diplayN in diplay
latitudeLatitude in decimal degrees
longitudeLongitude in decimal degrees
seriesIdentifier representing a unique monitoring location and time period assigned by OBIS-SEAMAP
num_upcallsTotal # Rwupcalls by day
sp_obsSpecies name
sp_tsnTaxonomic Serial Number added by OBIS-SEAMAP
obs_countTotal # Rwupcalls by day
presencePresence / absence (1 if num_upcalls > 0; 0 if num_upcalls = 0)
Marine mammals2,743
Sea turtles0
Rays and sharks0
Other species0
Non spatial0
Non species0
Date, Begin2006-01-06
Date, End2007-02-21
Temporal prec.111000
Latitude42.12 - 42.65
Longitude-70.56 - -70.18
Coord. prec.6 decimal digits
Data typeAcoustic - #call
EffortYES (ID: 901)
Sharing policy CC-BY-NC (Minimum)
Also availalbe from None
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