Behavioural effects of seismic dose escalation exposure on captive mackerel (Scomber scombrus).
Doksaeter, S.L., Forland, T.N., Hansen, R.R., Andersson, M., Grimsbø, E., Linne, M. and Karlsen, H.E.
Petroleum and fisheries are two of the most important industries in Norway, and the goal for management is sustainable coexistence for both. Mackerel is an important pelagic fishery resource, and mackerel can very well detect the seismic sound signals. The aim of this project was to investigate the behavioural responses of mackerel to seismic signals, and to evaluate potential responses in terms of affecting the fishery. Wild captured mackerel in a net pen was exposed to escalating seismic signals from an approaching source vessel, while behaviour was constantly monitored with video and echosounder, as well as the sound pressure level and particle motion level recorded with hydrophone and particle motion sensor, respectively. Fish behavior was analyzed in terms of swimming speed, vertical distribution, schooling and group dynamic. We aimed at conducting a dose escalation to identify the sound level at which a response is initiated. No clear responses were identified in response to the sound exposure. In addition, behavioural responses of farmed salmon and rainbow trout was monitored by video surveillance at three close-by aquaculture farms to avoid any potential harmful effects on the farmed fish. However, no behavioural responses in terms of swimming dynamic, swimming speed and collective behavior were observed from these videos.
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