Whale Casting:
Remote mobile streaming humpback whale vocalizations to the world

James P. Crutchfield and Alexandra M. Jurgens

Complexity Sciences Center
Physics Department
University of California at Davis
Davis, CA 95616

ABSTRACT: Over several days in early August 2021, while at sea in Chatham Strait, Southeast Alaska, aboard M/Y Blue Pearl, an online twitch.tv stream broadcast in real-time humpback whale vocalizations monitored via hydrophone. Dozens on mainland North American and around the planet listened in and chatted via the stream. The webcasts demonstrated a proof-of-concept: only relatively inexpensive commercial-off-the-shelf equipment is required for remote mobile streaming at sea. These notes document what was required and make recommendations for higher-quality and larger-scale deployments. One conclusion is that real-time, automated audio documenting whale acoustic behavior is readily accessible and, using the cloud, it can be directly integrated into behavioral databases—information sources that now often focus exclusively on nonreal-time visual-sighting narrative reports and photography.

Alexandra M. Jurgens and James P. Crutchfield, “Whale Casting: Remote mobile streaming humpback whale vocalizations to the world” (2022).
2212.02462 [q-bio.QM].