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From the Reef to the Ocean: Revealing the Acoustic Range of the Biophony of a Coral Reef (Moorea Island, French Polynesia)

Abstract : The ability of different marine species to use acoustic cues to locate reefs is known, but the maximal propagation distance of coral reef sounds is still unknown. Using drifting antennas (made of a floater and an autonomous recorder connected to a hydrophone), six transects were realized from the reef crest up to 10 km in the open ocean on Moorea island (French Polynesia). Benthic invertebrates were the major contributors to the ambient noise, producing acoustic mass phenomena (3.5–5.5 kHz) that could propagate at more than 90 km under flat/calm sea conditions and more than 50 km with an average wind regime of 6 knots. However, fish choruses, with frequencies mainly between 200 and 500 Hz would not propagate at distances greater than 2 km. These distances decreased with increasing wind or ship traffic. Using audiograms of different taxa, we estimated that fish post-larvae and invertebrates likely hear the reef at distances up to 0.5 km and some cetaceans would be able to detect reefs up to more than 17 km. These results are an empirically based validation from an example reef and are essential to understanding the effect of soundscape degradation on different zoological groups.
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Submitted on : Friday, May 28, 2021 - 5:30:33 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, June 30, 2021 - 9:40:12 PM
Long-term archiving on: : Sunday, August 29, 2021 - 7:42:58 PM

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Xavier Raick, Lucia Di Iorio, Cédric Gervaise, Julie Lossent, David Lecchini, et al.. From the Reef to the Ocean: Revealing the Acoustic Range of the Biophony of a Coral Reef (Moorea Island, French Polynesia). Journal of Marine Science and Engineering, MDPI, 2021, 9 (4), pp.420. ⟨10.3390/jmse9040420⟩. ⟨hal-03241581⟩

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