Bioacoustics as a research tool for avian ecology and conservation

Abrahams, C. ORCID: 0000-0003-0301-5585, 2022. Bioacoustics as a research tool for avian ecology and conservation. PhD, Nottingham Trent University.

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1. Ecological data from effective survey and monitoring methods are vitally important for evidence-based nature conservation. This need is increasingly being met by technological developments that enable new approaches for collecting biodiversity data. Among these, acoustic techniques can potentially improve the detection and census of vocal taxa such as birds, and can inform habitat quality assessments.

2. Although improvements in hardware and software for acoustic data capture and analysis are providing new tools for scientific researchers and conservation managers, the advancing technology needs to be matched by methodological understanding, good practice, and accepted protocols. These norms and standards do not yet exist for effective application by users.

3. The published work presented here sets out novel research on bird bioacoustics and freshwater ecoacoustics, applying this to species and habitats of high conservation concern. The publications aim to show how the acoustic approach may be used to determine occupancy, assess population size, understand behaviour and determine community characteristics. Vocal activity rates in bird species are studied and occupancy models created, to interpret acoustic data captured in the field. Different song types, potentially related to breeding status, are identified for a priority species. The ecoacoustic approach is used to assess freshwater ecosystem quality, based on the overall soundscape.

4. The results of the published works have been used to better target acoustic monitoring studies and improve the quality of existing survey methods. This knowledge transfer has been enabled by the development and publication of acoustic protocols for bird survey and freshwater habitat assessment. Further testing is still required to establish optimal standard practices for survey and monitoring, but bioacoustics and ecoacoustics offer significant new approaches for more effective monitoring of species and habitats of conservation concern.

Item Type: Thesis
Creators: Abrahams, C.
Date: September 2022
Rights: The copyright in this work is held by the author. You may copy up to 5% of this work for private study, or personal, non-commercial research. Any re-use of the information contained within this document should be fully referenced, quoting the author, title, university, degree level and pagination. Queries or requests for any other use, or if a more substantial copy is required, should be directed to the author.
Divisions: Schools > School of Science and Technology
Record created by: Linda Sullivan
Date Added: 04 Oct 2022 13:28
Last Modified: 04 Oct 2022 13:29

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