Skip to content
All news
  • All news
  • About whales & dolphins
  • Corporates
  • Create healthy seas
  • End captivity
  • Green Whale
  • Prevent deaths in nets
  • Scottish Dolphin Centre
  • Stop whaling
  • Stranding
  • Whale watching
Tilikum, the father of Nakai. © Paul Wigmore

Orca Nakai dies at SeaWorld San Diego

SeaWorld San Diego has announced the death of the orca Nakai. The 20-year-old male orca...
Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin © Mike Bossley/WDC

Last captive Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin to be freed in South Korea

Bibongi, the last Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin held in captivity in South Korea, is to be...
Common bottlenose dolphin

100 bottlenose dolphins hunted in Faroe Islands

This morning, (July 29th), 100 bottlenose dolphins were killed in Skálafjörður on the Faroe Islands. The...

Whales left to die in agony as grenade harpoons fail to explode

Evidence has emerged of grenade-tipped harpoons failing to explode when fired into fin whales by...

Man-made noise forces whales and dolphins to choose life over food

A new study looking at the effects of excessive underwater noise on whales, dolphins and porpoises has revealed that they can often face a choice of living over eating when they hear a threat.

Researchers, including scientists from the University of St Andrews, have discovered that man-made underwater noise pollution is picked up by whales in a similar manner to the way they sense natural predators, explaining why some species are particularly sensitive to noise disturbance.

The findings reveal that whale, dolphin and porpoise responses to sounds such as military sonar systems are shaped by how they evolved to respond to natural predators like orcas, and that underwater noise disturbance created by humans is causing them to stop foraging for food and, therefore, become weakened and more vulnerable.

The research team found that navy sonar caused cessation of foraging in all four species of whale they studied – northern bottlenose, humpback, sperm and long-finned pilot whales – which all rely on acoustic signals to assess risk from attack as well as to find food themselves.

'Behavioral responses to predatory sounds predict sensitivity of cetaceans to anthropogenic noise within a soundscape of fear' by Patrick Miller and Saana Isojunno, is published  in the journal PNAS and available online. 

About George Berry

George is a member of WDC's Communications team and website coordinator.

1 Comment

  1. Michelle La Seur on 31st March 2022 at 4:25 pm

    Decrease the underwater noise

Leave a Comment