Category Archives: Wildlife

General wildlife biology issues.

Repeating the Message: Evidence of Multiple Sound Sources in the Bottlenose Dolphin

A colleague of mine called me this evening to recount a disturbing incident at the Effects of Noise on Aquatic Life conference recently held in Dublin, Ireland. A high-profile researcher there apparently asserted that bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) only have a single sound source, specifically calling out research I was part of as having been… Read More »

Another Hawk-Killer in Court

Why am I not surprised this jerk was a pigeon fancier? Prosecutors say Kapusta and another person are pigeon-racing enthusiasts who killed the predatory hawks because they saw them as threats to their pigeons.

Raspberry Pi: An Update on Sound

Life has been a bit demanding lately, so it has been a while since I last worked on the Raspberry Pis. I had a notion that I might dragoon the Pis into serving as compute engines for a simulation I wrote in Python, and that got me motivated to get new Raspbian images and set… Read More »

Population Modeling in Python

One of the courses I enjoyed most in my Ph.D. program was taught by Prof. Kirk Winemiller on population dynamics. There are various collections of models in various languages out there, and multi-model population dynamic applications. But I still think that there is some utility to rolling my own. Since 2009, I’ve gotten more into… Read More »

Raspberry Pi First Run

I checked the UPS tracking number periodically today. My Raspberry Pi was marked as delivered at about 2:30 today. When I got home, I found the package. I still needed to prepare the SD card, so I brought up the RasPi Wiki instructions for SD card setup and went with the Debian Squeeze distribution to… Read More »

Official Interference in Biology

We’ve heard tales of officialdom greasing the way for people to profit over the consideration of species and ecosystems. Now we’ve got a home-grown Florida tale along those lines. Craig Pittman wrote an article appearing in the Tampa Bay Times that goes into the details. Department of Environmental Protection employee Connie Bersok has been suspended… Read More »

Personal Research and the Budget

Diane and I are working on a personal project to put together an acoustic sampling system that could yield information about the activity levels of snapping shrimp. Whitlow Au and his group have done this sort of thing out in the Pacific. Of course, they’ve gotten research funding to do it. We’re looking to do… Read More »

The Cattleman’s Sage Grouse Rant

An op-ed piece by Mike Deering, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Director of Communications, lays out an argument to let ranchers handle conservation of the sage grouse without involving the protection of the Endangered Species Act: The wackos as I still prefer to call them have successfully weaseled their way to the front… Read More »

No One Expects the Comparative Anatomist

Upcoming television series on PBS: Inside Nature’s Giants, begins January 18th at 10 PM. Professor Joy Reidenberg is an unlikely TV star. She’s a comparative anatomist with the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. Physically, she is diminutive, dark-haired and dark-eyed, and not the sort of slender sylph in morphotype that TV producers… Read More »

SMM 2011: Sirenian Workshop

I’m attending the Society for Marine Mammalogy biennial conference this year. The location is the Tampa Convention Center, making this pretty simple to get to. Saturday and Sunday are when various workshops are held. Today, I’m attending the Sirenian workshop. It is an all-day affair, with 33 speakers and over 200 attendees. My early connectivity… Read More »

Not as Simple as They Think

The editors of the Tulsa World think that Lawmakers should adopt stronger wildlife laws. That’s fair enough in light of the tragedy in Ohio where exotic predators like lions, tigers, and bears were released by a suicidal keeper. But the editorial’s structure left much to be desired, in my opinion. They do have a good… Read More »

The Visitor in the Night

About 5 AM, I heard an owl outside the house. I went out to check, since owls and hawks don’t mix well. I wanted to make sure the owl wasn’t near Rusty. The owl turned out to be perched high in an oak tree in the front yard. The owl proved to be a pretty… Read More »

The Unseen Spill

There’s an article in the Austin American Statesman about the ongoing Gulf oil spill. It talks about the effects of the spill throughout the water column. The massive use of dispersants at depth is noted as being experimental: nobody knows exactly what outcomes you get by doing that. Well, other than that less of the… Read More »

Listening to Snapping Shrimp

I’m working on setting up a citizen scientist project to document where snapping shrimp (family Alpheidae) are active pre- and post-contamination by the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. In this post, I just want to introduce the basic concepts and provide an example sound file. Snapping shrimp comprise a number of species, mostly… Read More »