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Sea Search selects Shure for bioacoustics

Sea Search selects Shure for bioacoustics

Sea Search selects Shure for bioacoustics

South Africa:

Shure’s VP89L shotgun microphone has been used in South Africa recently to capture the sounds and behaviours of a variety of wild animals. The project was carried out by Sea Search, a research organisation based in Cape Town, with the VP89L microphone supplied by local distributor Wild & Marr.

The research undertaken by Sea Search focuses on animal behaviour and acoustic monitoring for conservation applications. Sea Search co-director Tess Gridley and her team work on a range of species, including Bottlenose Dolphins, Cape Fur Seals and Humpback Whales. She is also a research associate at the University of Cape Town and a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Stellenbosch. Gridley leads a team of students and interns working on a variety of bioacoustics projects – the acoustics concerned with sounds produced by or affecting living organisms, especially as relating to communication – and founded by the African Bioacoustics Community. The recording work has taken the team from uShaka Marine World in Kwa-Zulu Natal, South Africa all the way up to Namibia.

In 2018, Sea Search established the “noisy bird” project, which saw the team capturing the sounds of Lesser Flamingos, Cape Cormorants and African Sacred Ibis (a bird known for its role in the religion of the Ancient Egyptians and its symbolism of the god Thoth.)

Using the Shure VP89L shotgun mic, Gridley’s objective is to understand the evolutionary, ecological and cultural factors shaping animal behaviour. She applies novel methodology and statistical analysis to help answer the fundamental ecological questions on individual movement, distribution, density and responses to noise. She is interested in understanding the repertoire of calls made; how calls differ between species, who is calling who, how calls function and more. During lockdown, Gridley recorded Egyptian Geese from her back garden and described the repertoire of honks, hisses and other calls.

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