Case Study: Marine ecosystems benefit from collaboration between IMOS and data processing software developers

Client

The IMOS Bio-Acoustics team

Location

Data collected from vessels traversing the Indian Ocean and waters south and east of Australia and across to New Zealand


"We’ve had a long and successful association with Echoview, and our team talks to the Echoview people regularly to discuss our needs. We are constantly striving to obtain better software tools to improve data quality and reduce data processing time."

Dr Rudy Kloser, CSIRO


Background

Bio-acoustic data provide an indicator of abundance, distribution and behaviour of mid-trophic level organisms (macro-zooplankton and micronekton communities between 2 cm and 20 cm in length) needed for ecosystem-based fisheries management, marine planning and monitoring impacts of climate change and variability.

These species are a key link between the phytoplankton and smaller zooplankton and higher predators in marine food webs. They transfer energy from primary producers at the ocean surface to top predators such as tunas, billfish, sharks, seals and seabirds, thereby actively transporting carbon from surface waters to the deep-ocean.

Example of how bioacoustics data is collected by transmitting a pulse of sound in the water that reflects off the species to produce an echogram.

Example of how bioacoustics data is collected by transmitting a pulse of sound in the water that reflects off the species to produce an echogram.

Since July 2010, the IMOS Bio-Acoustic program has operated as a Ships of opportunity (SOOP) sub-facility, collecting data from vessels traversing the Indian Ocean and waters south and east of Australia and across to New Zealand. Between 2010 and 2015 161,793 km of data were collected and processed

A number of vessels are participating in the bio-acoustics program depending on location and availability (5-10). Some of the vessels are commercial fishing vessels that have agreed to record data during transits to and from fishing grounds, while others are scientific research vessels

The IMOS Bio-Acoustic sub-facility uses Echoview software to process acoustic data gathered. Processed data is then made publicly available through the Australian Ocean Data Network (AODN) portal.

Leader of the IMOS Bio-Acoustic sub-facility, Dr Rudy Kloser, believes the Echoview software and ongoing interaction with developers at the company, have been important factors in being able to deliver quality data to users.

To continue reading, please head to the IMOS website here.