In the beginning of 2010, Morigenos started carrying out acoustic monitoring of dolphins in Slovenia. We already have the first data, although we are only in the early phase. Acoustic monitoring means that we monitor and study the animals by using special equipment – hydrophones (underwater mycrophones) - to detect and record their natural vocalisations. This way we can find out many interesting and important things. In collaboration with Marine Biology Station in Piran (Slovenia) and Chelonia Ltd (UK) we deployed a device called C-POD (see photo) in the sea. The C-POD enables us to detect dolphin presence even in bad weather, during the night and whenever we are not able to be out in the field. This way we are gaining further insights into their patterns of occurrence in our waters, their feeding habits and even interactions with fisheries. In spring 2010, during one of our encounters with dolphins, we also recorded the first dolphin sounds in Slovenian waters. We initially started some acoustic sampling back in 2005, but only as a testing phase, as this was not one of research priorities back then. Apart from our existing research methods, acoustic monitoring will enable us to acquire more information on dolphins in Slovenia and we hope this will aid to their conservation.
You can see a few photos from the field here: Acoustic monitoring