News from the Read Lab

2018 BRS – Second Phase – First Update - Last week we welcomed Jessica Aschettino to our field team to deploy satellite-linked dive recorders for the second phase of the 2018 Behavioral Response Study, funded by NAVFAC Atlantic (U.S. Navy). Daniel Webster, who usually deploys satellite tags for us, injured his hand and was unavailable. Jessica, who works for HDR in Virginia Beach, kindly ...
Wrapping Up The First Phase of the 2018 Atlantic BRS - We have just wrapped up field work in the first phase of the 2018 Atlantic Behavioral Response Study. We’ll take a month off and then start again in the middle of July with a new round of tag deployments and Controlled Exposure Experiments (CEEs).   On June 13th we conducted our second CEE of the ...
Atlantic BRS 2018 Field Work Second Update - During the past week we finished deploying satellite tags for the first leg of the 2018 Atlantic Behavioral Response (BRS) study. Then we conducted our first Controlled Exposure Experiment (CEE) with a mid-frequency sonar system deployed from a Navy destroyer. We also conducted another CEE with our scaled sound source, so all together it was ...
Atlantic BRS 2018 Field Work Update - Despite more unsettled weather, we made significant progress on the Atlantic BRS project this past week. We spent three very long days on the water with two, and sometimes three, boats working about 40 miles from shore.  Our field days begin at 4:30 in the morning and often don’t end until after 9:00 PM.  On ...
Field Work Underway for Atlantic BRS 2018 - It has been a challenging start to field work for the 2018 Atlantic Behavioral Response Study. Windy conditions have kept us off the water on several days and when we have been offshore, our study animals have not been very co-operative. But despite these challenges, we managed to complete our first Controlled Exposure Experiment (CEE) ...
Vaquita CPR -   Andy is in San Felipe this month, participating in the Vaquita CPR project. The objective is to catch as many of the remaining vaquitas as possible and bring them into human care. You can read about the initial stages of the project in a news article here. Wish us luck!
Atlantic BRS 2017 Update - Last week we completed the first component of field work in the 2017 Atlantic Behavioral Response Study (ABRS). In this first phase of the field experiment we worked with Daniel Webster of the Cascade Research Collective to deploy satellite-linked dive recorders on nine short-finned pilot whales and five Cuvier’s beaked whales. All of the tagged ...
Congratulations to Brianna Elliott - Congratulations to Brianna for winning the Archie Carr Student Award for Best Conservation Poster at this year’s International Sea Turtle Symposium held in (wait for it…) Las Vegas. Sometimes what happens in Vegas doesn’t stay in Vegas  
SEAMAMMS 2017 - More than 140 students, educators and environmental professionals took part in the Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic Marine Mammal Symposium (SEAMAMMS) here at the Duke Marine Lab last weekend.  Undergraduate and graduate students presented their research findings on marine mammal biology and conservation. Attendees also took part in a panel discussion about the future of the Endangered Species Act ...
New Paper on Pilot Whale Diving Behavior - Nicola Quick is the senior author on a new paper on the diving behavior of short-finned pilot whales published in Scientific Reports. We used Hidden Markov Models (HMM) to characterize states of diving behaviour and the transitions between states in short-finned pilot whales. We used three parameters (number of buzzes, maximum dive depth and duration) measured in ...