Working together with researchers from the U.S. and France, MERIDIAN is helping compile a catalog of all known fish sounds and creating a benchmark dataset for marine bioacoustics detection and classification algorithms. Read on to find out more.

CetaSound – A Benchmark Dataset for Marine Bioacoustics

Modern deep neural networks owe their success at solving tasks such as image classification and voice recognition to the existence of large training and benchmark datasets with thousands and even millions of labelled data samples, e.g., ImageNet. When it comes to underwater acoustics, however, there is still a long way to go in terms of compiling datasets of sufficient size and quality, as well as properly describing the datasets and making them openly available. Inspired by the tremendous impact ImageNet has had on the field of machine learning, MERIDIAN is working together with researchers from IMT Atlantique in France to create a similar benchmark dataset for marine bioacoustics with the name CetaSound. Focussing initially on marine mammals, the project makes use of publicly available acoustic data samples such as those found in the Watkins Marine Mammal Sound Database. If you want to contribute to CetaSound or just learn more, don’t hesitate to contact us!

Cataloging All the Known Fish Sounds

Passive acoustic monitoring has become an important tool in fisheries and ecological studies. However, much remains unknown about fish sounds, particularly in the Pacific Ocean. There are less than 1,000 species of fish that have been documented to produce sound, compared to the 30,000 fish species that exist in the world. MERIDIAN team member, Amalis Riera is collaborating with a few captive facilities to try to describe as many fish sounds as possible from the Pacific Ocean. These will contribute to building a catalogue of known fish sounds that will then be used to identify sounds collected by passive acoustic studies.

There are six locations where Amalis has collected acoustic recordings in search of fish sounds between Vancouver Island, Vancouver, Washington State and Oregon. So far there are over 3,000 hours of recordings, some of which have been analyzed and some others that still remain to be inspected. The tanks and net pens where the hydrophones were deployed contained fish species such as Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida), grunt sculpin (Rhamphocottus richardsonii), Herring (Clupea pallasii), Lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus), Northern ronquil (Ronquilus jordani), Pacific cod (Gadus macrocephalus) Red brotula (Brosmophycis marginata), sablefish (Anoplopoma fimbria), saffron cod (Eleginus gracilis), walleye pollock (Gadus chalcogrammus), and white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus).

Amalis has already validated sounds from Arctic cod, walleye pollock and sablefish, thus contributing to the catalogue with two species of Pacific Ocean gadids and one Pacific deep sea species.

MERIDIAN team member, Amalis Riera, recording fish sounds with a handheld hydrophone.