The expansion of shipping and aquatic industrial activities in recent years has led to growing concern about the effects of man-made sounds on aquatic life. Sources include (but are not limited to) pleasure boating, fishing, the shipping of goods, offshore exploration for oil and gas, dredging, construction of bridges, harbors, oil and gas platforms, wind farms and other renewable energy devices, and the use of sonar by commercial and military vessels. There are very substantial gaps in our understanding of the effects of these sounds, especially for fishes and invertebrates. Currently, it is almost impossible to come to clear conclusions on the nature and levels of man-made sound that have potential to cause effects upon these animals. In order to develop a better understanding of effects of man-made sound, this paper identifies the most critical information needs and data gaps on the effects of various sounds on fishes, fisheries, and invertebrates resulting from the use of sound-generating devices. It highlights the major issues and discusses the information currently available on each of the information needs and data gaps. The paper then identifies the critical questions concerning the effects of man-made sounds on aquatic life for which answers are not readily available and articulates the types of information needed to fulfill each of these drivers for information—the key information gaps. Finally, a list of priorities for research and development is presented.
Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 12, 2014
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