to Dr. Arthur N. Popper's Laboratory of Aquatic Bioacoustics
The Aquatic Bioacoustics
Laboratory (ABL) is primarily involved in the study of hearing by
aquatic organisms. Most work in the laboratory focuses on fishes,
although studies have been done with other non-mammalian vertebrates.
Our fish studies have focused on various aspects of hearing that range
from behavioral investigations to determine what an animal can hear
to physiological investigations of the responses of the ear and
The majority of work
in the lab is now involved with studies on the
effects of human-generated
(anthropogenic) sound on aquatic organisms. This has resulted in
a series of studies that explore behavioral and physiological
effects of increased ambient sounds on fish. These
studies have asked about effects of seismic air-guns, pile driving,
and general increases in background sound levels on fish hearing and
Investigations in the
past have ranged
from basic questions concerning evolution and mechanisms of sound
detection, investigations of hearing sensitivity, studies on the
anatomy and ultrastructure of the ear, and many other topics (see
publications link at left).
We work with a range of species since we are interested in the diversity
of auditory mechanisms found among fishes.
Over the past several years, Dr. Poppper has been
involved in the organization of several international meetings on
the Effects of Noise on Aquatic Life. Another meeting will
take place in 2013 in Europe,
recent book edited by Dr. Popper and Dr. Anthony Hawkins on the
presentations at the 2010 meeting in Cork, Ireland, has been
In addition, Dr. Popper and colleauges at the University of
Maryland are hosting the 2012 meeting of the International Society
for Neuroethology at College Park. Please look at
our web site and consider
attending the meeting.
Dr. Popper is no longer
accepting students in his lab because of a shift in work that
results in most projects taking place at locations other than at the
University of Maryland. Dr. Popper is, however, remaining very
active in his research and other scholarly activities.
Dr. Popper and his long-time colleague Dr. Richard Fay have
recently published their 25th co-authored paper (and 50th book).
The reference is:
Fay, R. R. and Popper, A. N. (2012).
Fish hearing: New
perspectives from two “senior” bioacousticians. Brain, Behaviour and
Evolution 792:215-217. DOI: 10.1159/000338719
The first two of a series of papers on the effects of pile driving
sounds on fishes have now been published. These references
Halvorsen, M. B., Casper, B. M, Woodley, C. M.,
Carlson, T. J., and Popper, A. N. (in press).
onset of injury in Chinook salmon from exposure to impulsive pile
driving sounds. PLoS ONE, 7(6)
Casper, B. C., Popper, A. N., Matthews, F., Carlson,
T. J., and Halvorsen, M. B. (2012).
Recovery of barotrauma injuries in Chinook salmon,
from exposure to pile driving sound. PLoS ONE,
7(6): e39593. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0039593.
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