Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 30 Issue 02

View Issue TOC
Volume 30, No. 2
Pages 113 - 115

OpenAccess

Advances in Ecosystem Research: Saildrone Surveys of Oceanography, Fish, and Marine Mammals in the Bering Sea

Calvin W. Mordy Edward D. CokeletAlex De RobertisRichard Jenkins Carey E. Kuhn Noah Lawrence-SlavasCatherine L. Berchok Jessica L. Crance Jeremy T. Sterling Jessica N. CrossPhyllis J. Stabeno Christian Meinig Heather M. TabisolaWilliam BurgessIvar Wangen
Article Abstract

Saildrones are unmanned surface vehicles engineered for oceanographic research and powered by wind and solar energy. In the summer of 2016, two Saildrones surveyed the southeastern Bering Sea using passive acoustics to listen for vocalizations of marine mammals and active acoustics to quantify the spatial distribution of small and large fishes. Fish distributions were examined during foraging trips of northern fur seals (Callorhinus ursinus), and initial results suggest these prey distributions may influence the diving behavior of fur seals. The Saildrone is faster, has greater instrument capacity, and requires less support services than its counterparts. This innovative platform performed well in stormy conditions, and it demonstrated the potential to augment fishery surveys and advance ecosystem research.

Citation

Mordy, C.W., E.D. Cokelet, A. De Robertis, R. Jenkins, C.E. Kuhn, N. Lawrence-Slavas, C.L. Berchok, J.L. Crance, J.T. Sterling, J.N. Cross, P.J. Stabeno, C. Meinig, H.M. Tabisola, W. Burgess, and I. Wangen. 2017. Advances in ecosystem research: Saildrone surveys of oceanography, fish, and marine mammals in the Bering Sea. Oceanography 30(2):113–115, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2017.230.

References

Benoit-Bird, K.J., B.C. Battaile, C.A. Nordstrom, and A.W. Trites. 2013. Foraging behavior of northern fur seals closely matches the hierarchical patch scales of prey. Marine Ecology Progress Series 479:283–302, https://doi.org/10.3354/meps10209.

Cokelet, E.D., C. Meinig, N. Lawrence-Slavas, P.J. Stabeno, C.W. Mordy, H.M. Tabisola, R. Jenkins, and J.N. Cross. 2015. The use of Saildrones to examine spring conditions in the Bering Sea. Pp. 1–7 in OCEANS 2015 - MTS/IEEE Washington. October 19–22, 2015, Washington, DC.

De Robertis, A., D.R. McKelvey, and P.H. Ressler. 2010. Development and application of an empirical multifrequency method for backscatter classification. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 67(9):1,459–1,474, https://doi.org/10.1139/F10-075.

Hunt, G.L. Jr., K.O. Coyle, L.B. Eisner, E.V. Farley, R.A. Heintz, F. Mueter, J.M. Napp, J.E. Overland, P.H. Ressler, S. Salo, and P.J. Stabeno. 2011. Climate impacts on eastern Bering Sea foodwebs: A synthesis of new data and an assessment of the Oscillating Control Hypothesis. ICES Journal of Marine Science 68(6):1,230–1,243, https://doi.org/10.1093/icesjms/fsr036.

Iverson, R.L., L.K. Coachman, R.T. Cooney, T.S. English, J.J. Goering, G.L. Hunt, M.C. Macauley, C.P. McRoy, W.S. Reeburg, and T.E. Whitledge. 1979. Ecological significance of fronts in the southeastern Bering Sea. Pp. 437–466 in Ecological Processes in Coastal and Marine Systems. R.J. Livingston, ed., Springer, Boston, MA.

Kuhn, C.E., R.R. Ream, J.T. Sterling, J.R. Thomason, and R.G. Towell. 2014. Spatial segregation and the influence of habitat on the foraging behavior of northern fur seals (Callorhinus ursinus). Canadian Journal of Zoology 92(10):861–873, https://doi.org/10.1139/cjz-2014-0087.

Kuhn, C.E., J.T. Sterling, and T.K. Zeppelin. 2015. Linking northern fur seal behavior with prey distributions: The impact of temporal mismatch between predator studies and prey surveys. Animal Biotelemetry 3(1):26, https://doi.org/10.1186/s40317-015-0064-5.

Meinig, C., N. Lawrence-Slavas, R. Jenkins, and H.M. Tabisola. 2015. The use of Saildrones to examine spring conditions in the Bering Sea: Vehicle specification and mission performance. Pp. 1–6 in OCEANS 2015 - MTS/IEEE Washington. October 19–22, 2015, Washington, DC.

National Marine Fisheries Service. 2016. Fisheries of the United States, 2015. http://www.st.nmfs.noaa.gov/commercial-fisheries/fus/fus15.

Novarini, J.C., and D.R. Bruno. 1982. Effects of the sub-surface bubble layer on sound propagation. The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 72(2):510–514, https://doi.org/10.1121/1.388107.

Shabangu, F.W., E. Ona, and D. Yemane. 2014. Measurements of acoustic attenuation at 38 kHz by wind-induced air bubbles with suggested correction factors for hull-mounted transducers. Fisheries Research 151:47–56, https://doi.org/10.1016/​j.fishres.2013.12.008.

Shelden, K.E., S.E. Moore, J.M. Waite, P.R. Wade, and D.J. Rugh. 2005. Historic and current habitat use by North Pacific right whales Eubalaena japonica in the Bering Sea and Gulf of Alaska. Mammal Review 35(2):129–155, https://doi.org/​10.1111/j.1365-2907.2005.00065.x.

Testa, J.W. 2016. Fur Seal Investigations, 2013–2014. NMFS–AFSC-316, US Department of Commerce, Washington, DC, 124 pp.

Walline, P.D. 2007. Geostatistical simulations of eastern Bering Sea walleye pollock spatial distributions, to estimate sampling precision. ICES Journal of Marine Science 64(3):559–569, https://doi.org/10.1093/icesjms/fsl045.

Wassmann, P., C.M. Duarte, S. Agustí, and M.K. Sejr. 2011. Footprints of climate change in the Arctic marine ecosystem. Global Change Biology 17(2):1,235–1,249, https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2486.2010.02311.x.

Zeppelin, T.K., and R.R. Ream. 2006. Foraging habitats based on the diet of female northern fur seals (Callorhinus ursinus) on the Pribilof Islands, Alaska. Journal of Zoology 270(4):565–576, https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1469-7998.2006.00122.x.

Copyright & Usage

This is an open access article made available under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution, and reproduction in any medium or format as long as users cite the materials appropriately, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate the changes that were made to the original content. Images, animations, videos, or other third-party material used in articles are included in the Creative Commons license unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If the material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission directly from the license holder to reproduce the material.