The BBC has a thoroughly depressing (but worth reading) article on its website today about how human activity is making the oceans too noisy for dolphins and whales to communicate, with serious repercussions for their breeding-and-feeding habits. The Beeb reports on a new report from IFAW, the International Fund for Animal Welfare:
Noise generated by ships’ engines and propellers, and by seismic airguns used in oil and gas exploration, produce a range of frequencies that can interfere with both these groups of species, IFAW concludes.
Its report–Ocean Noise: Turn it down–cites research showing that the effective range of blue whales’ calls is only about one-tenth of what it was before the era of engine-driven commercial shipping.
Quiet down, people. We could use more peace and quiet on land, too.
(Via The Book Bench, “Leviathan Lost”)