Fin whale localized acoustic detections off Kauai 2011-2017

Regina A. Guazzo, Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific

Dataset credit

Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific


Primary contact Regina Guazzo Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific
Data entry Ei Fujioka Duke University



Male fin whales sing by producing 20-Hz pulses in regular patterns of inter-note intervals. While singing, fin whales may also alternate the frequency ranges of their notes. Different song patterns have been observed in different regions of the world's oceans. New song patterns suddenly emerging in an area have been hypothesized to either be indicators of new groups of whales in the area or signs of cultural transmission between groups. Since the status of fin whales around Hawaii is unknown and visual surveys are expensive and difficult to conduct in offshore areas, passive acoustic monitoring has been proposed as a way to monitor these whales. We used passive acoustic recordings from an array of 14 hydrophones to analyze the song patterns of 115 fin whale encounters made up of 50,034 unique notes off Kauai, Hawaii from 2011--2017.

Fin whale singing patterns were more complicated than previously described. Fin whales off Hawaii sang in five different patterns made of two 20-Hz note types and both singlet and doublet inter-note interval patterns. The inter-note intervals present in their songs were 28/33 s for the lower frequency doublet, 30 s for the lower frequency singlet, 17/24 s for the higher frequency doublet, 17 s for the higher frequency singlet, and 12/20 s for the doublet that lternated between both note types.

Some of these song patterns were unique to these fin whales in Hawaiian waters, while others were similar to song patterns recorded from fin whales off the U.S. west coast. Individual fin whales often utilized several different song patterns which suggests that multiple song patterns are not necessarily indicators of different individuals or groups.

The dominant song pattern also changed over these years. Cultural transmission may have occurred between fin whales in Hawaiian waters and off the U.S. west coast, which has resulted in similar songs being present at both locations but on lagged timescales. Alternatively, groups occupying the Hawaiian waters could shift over time resulting in different song patterns becoming dominant. This work has implications for the population structure and behavior of Hawaii fin whales.



Supplemental information

[UPDATE] Effort data were updated on 2021-03-01.

14 stationary hydrophones were used to detect. The monitoring effort for the 14 hydrophones were same. The locations of the hydrophones are rounded and approximate.

TrackNum: Song Patterns
1: Mostly A-A Singlet, but also A-B doublet and B-B singlet
2: A-A singlet
3: A-A doublet
4: A-A doublet
5: A-B doublet and B-B doublet
6: A-B doublet, B-B singlet, A-A doublet
7: A-A doublet
8: A-A doublet
9: A-A singlet
10: A-A singlet
11: A-B doublet and A-A singlet
12: A-B doublet
13: A-A doublet
14: A-A doublet
15: A-A doublet
16: B-B singlet
17: A-A doublet
18: A-A doublet
19: A-A singlet
20: A-A doublet
21: A-A singlet
22: A-A singlet
23: A-A doublet
24: A-A singlet
25: B-B singlet
26: A-B doublet, B-B doublet, A-A singlet
27: A-A doublet
28: B-B doublet
29: A-A doublet
30: B-B doublet
31: A-A doublet
32: A-B doublet, A-A doublet
33: B-B doublet
34: A-A doublet
35: B-B doublet
36: B-B doublet
37: A-B doublet, B-B doublet, A-A singlet
38: A-B doublet
39: A-B doublet, B-B doublet, A-A singlet
40: A-B doublet, B-B doublet, A-A singlet
41: B-B doublet
42: B-B singlet
43: A-B doublet, B-B doublet, A-A singlet
44: A-B doublet, B-B doublet
45: A-B doublet
46: A-A singlet
47: B-B singlet
48: A-A doublet
49: Mostly A-B doublet, but also A-A doublet and B-B singlet
50: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
51: A-B doublet, B-B singlet, A-A singlet
52: A-A singlet
53: A-B doublet, B-B doublet
54: A-B doublet
55: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
56: B-B doublet
57: A-B doublet
58: B-B doublet
59: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
60: B-B singlet
61: A-A doublet
62: A-B doublet
63: A-B doublet
64: A-A singlet
65: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
66: A-A doublet
67: A-B doublet, A-A doublet
68: A-A singlet
69: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
70: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
71: A-A singlet, B-B singlet
72: A-A singlet
73: A-A singlet
74: A-B doublet, B-B doublet, A-A doublet
75: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
76: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
77: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
78: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
79: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
80: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
81: A-B doublet
82: A-B doublet
83: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
84: A-B doublet
85: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
86: A-B doublet
87: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
88: B-B singlet
89: A-B doublet
90: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
91: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
92: B-B singlet
93: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
94: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
95: A-B doublet
96: A-B doublet
97: A-A doublet
98: A-A doublet
99: A-A singlet
100: A-B doublet
101: A-B doublet
102: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
103: A-B doublet
104: B-B doublet
105: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
106: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
107: A-A doublet, B-B doublet
108: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
109: A-B doublet, A-A doublet
110: A-B doublet
111: A-B doublet, A-A singlet
112: A-B doublet
113: A-B doublet, B-B singlet
114: A-B doublet
115: A-B doublet




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 number (generated by OBIS-SEAMAP)
geomGeometry field added by OBIS-SEAMAP
Marine mammals50,034
Sea turtles0
Rays and sharks0
Other species0
Non spatial0
Non species0
Date, Begin2011-01-20
Date, End2017-03-11
Temporal prec.111111
Latitude22.26 - 22.83
Longitude-160.05 - -159.80
Coord. prec.6 decimal digits
Data typeAcoustic - presence
EffortYES (ID: 2123)
Traveled (km)0
Travel hours226,756
Contr. through
Sharing policy CC-BY-NC (Minimum)
Also available from GBIF (via DOI)
See metadata in static HTML
See metadata in FGDC XML
See download history / statistics