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Call Catalogue

Dr. John Ford’s Southern Resident Killer Whale Call Catalogue

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Bioacoustics Workshop

We hosted a Bioacoustics Workshop in August of 2022. Topics discussed range from whale sightings and conservation to the application of deep learning models to identify whale calls.

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Forecast Models

Forecast whale locations based on hydrophone detections, visual observations from citizen science groups, and environmental data.

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Classification Models

Models that identify the source of underwater sounds. Explore our diverse models designed to discern underwater sounds from marine mammals.

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Our team consistently publishes novel research on marine mammal acoustics. Come see our latest findings and contributions to the field.

Photo Credits: Lauren Laturnus

Our Research Progress

Humans and Algorithms Listening to Orcas explores the concept of training artificial intelligence systems to detect underwater whale vocalizations. The research goal is to develop a whale forecasting system to warn nearby ships of whale presence. This could prevent potentially fatal ship strikes for the endangered Southern Resident killer whales and other whale species that frequent the waters of the Salish Sea in the Pacific Northwest.

New Measures for 2024 to Protect Southern Resident Killer Whales

By Ruth Joy, Olivia Murphy on May 29, 2024

There will be a new area added to the management measures put in place to help recover the endangered Southern Resident killer whales (SRKW) for the 2024 season. You can find a detailed overview of these measures here In the later months of 2023, a team of researchers in Dr. Ruth Joy’s laboratory at Simon Fraser University were contracted by Transport Canada to complete a project regarding one of the Interim Sanctuary Zones (ISZs) located in the Salish Sea.

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Postdoctoral Fellowship

By Olivia Murphy on September 1, 2023

Postdoctoral researcher, Peter Thompson, has been awarded the Liber Ero Postdoctoral Fellowship. This is awarded to early career scientists studying important and urgent conservation problems in Canada. Peter’s research will analyze the movement and behaviour of endangered Southern Resident killer whales in the Salish Sea. Peter is interested in designing models that can predict what areas of the Salish Sea are most likely to be used by these whales, with a specific focus on interactions with marine vessels.

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Recent MSc Graduate

By Ruth Joy, Olivia Murphy on July 26, 2023

Congrats to one of our team members, Olivia Murphy, for recently finishing her Master’s degree at Simon Fraser University! In partnership with the Saturna Island Marine Research and Education Society, for the last two years, Olivia has been researching vessel related noise impacts on the endangered Southern Resident killer whales (SRKW) during their transits of Boundary Pass over the summer of 2022. Olivia found that SRKW are increasing the peak frequency, frequency range, and duration of calls when there is more underwater background noise from vessels in the area.

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MSc Research Award

By Olivia Murphy on July 26, 2023

Master’s student, Janine McNeilly, has recently been awarded the Graduate Research Award for Environmental Science at Simon Fraser University. Janine’s research focuses on the diet and energetic requirements of the endangered Southern Resident killer whales (SRKW). Her goal is to create a bioenergetics model for the SRKW and input various parameters for Chinook salmon and sablefish to determine if sablefish are a viable prey alternative. She has partnered with DFO to complete the field work component, which involves collecting prey and fecal samples from SRKW to determine the composition of their diet.

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