Whales communicate using melodic sounds or "songs" that can travel more than 100 meters. Oceangoing ships produce noise, mainly from their propellers, that interfere with the ability of whales to communicate. Other types of ships create additional layers of noise. Oil-exploration ships, for example, use reflection seismology to map the ocean floor. Research has shown that these additional noises can interfere with a whale's ability to communicate, causing confusion for the whale.
Published on Aug 20, 2012 by NMANewsDirect