Profile

Dr Douglas Gillespie
Researcher


Back in the 1980’s available computers were not powerful enough to process acoustic data in real time. However, with the increased power available since the mid 90’s, it is now possible to develop software that will detect and classify sounds in real time on affordable PC’s.

As computers become ever more powerful, we have been able to develop more sophisticated detectors for more and more species, increasing the range of frequencies we can work at and the number of channels of data that can be processed. Now that we no longer hunger for more processing power, the trend in affordable computing has been for smaller and lower power devices. Indeed, most of us carry a mobile phone containing a processor that is more than capable of carrying out serious amounts of real-time data processing. Much of my current research therefore involves the development of detection systems that can run on low power devices mounted on moored buoys and autonomous vehicles such as submarine gliders. As well as the challenge of making useful detections on a limited power budget, we are also addressing the problem of how to interpret this type of data: for instance, if I hear 10,000 echolocation clicks from my glider, how many animals are there ?

source: symbiosis

Research Overview:

Passive Acoustics

Passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) is an effective way of detecting many species of cetacean and has an important role in abundance surveys and in detecting cetaceans in the vicinity of certain human activities which may cause harm, such as seismic surveys, military sonar exercises and even shipping.

Passive acoustic detection of beaked whales

Beaked whales are one of the least known marine mammal species due to their offshore habitat and deep diving behaviour. We are investigating the use of passive acoustics as a means of detecting beaked whales using towed hydrophones close to the surface. Several beaked whale species are known to produce narrow band high frequency clicks during deep foraging dives. Many beaked whale species have not yet been recorded.

The four main focuses of our research are

  1. To assess how efficiently beaked whale can be detected.
  2. To develop software which can automatically detect beaked whale clicks and tell them apart from other species.
  3. To try to record the sounds of previously unrecorded beaked whale species.
  4. To test the effectiveness of passive acoustic monitoring in developing habitat use models for beaked whales.

PAMGUARD Software

PAMGUARD is open source software for the detection and localisation of marine mammal vocalisations. It is optimised for real time use in the field and has applications both in abundance survey and in mitigation monitoring.  I manage the PAMGUARD project and wrote both the core structure of the PAMGUARD and many of the detection, localisation and mapping modules within the software.

 

Recent publications


20  (of 37 published available) for dg50. (source: University of St Andrews PURE)
Please click title of any item for full details.

2018 (2)
Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems
vol.28 pp.216-230
(Article)
Cetacean rapid assessment: an approach to fill knowledge gaps and target conservation across large data deficient areas
Gillian Tracey Braulik, Magreth Kasuga, Anja Wittich, Jeremy J Kiszka, Jamie Donald John MacAulay, Douglas Michael Gillespie, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Said Shaib Said, Philip Steven Hammond 
Keywords: Cetaceans, Distribution, Environmental impact assessement, Management, Marine spatial planning, Rapid assessment, TanzaniaGE Environmental Sciences, QH301 Biology, SH Aquaculture. Fisheries. AnglingNDAS
2018 (1)
Marine Pollution Bulletin
vol.126 pp.1-18
(Review article)
Comparing methods suitable for monitoring marine mammals in low visibility conditions during seismic surveys
Ursula K. Verfuss, Douglas Michael Gillespie, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Tiago A. Marques, Brianne Miller, Rachael Plunkett, James A. Theriault, Dominic John Tollit, Daniel P. Zitterbart, Philippe Hubert, Len Thomas 
Keywords: Marine mammals, Monitoring methods, Underwater noise, Seismic survey, Detection performance, Low visibilityQH301 Biology
2017 (15/12)
Marine Pollution Bulletin
vol.125 pp.360-366
(Article)
2017 (2)
Journal of the Acoustical Society of America
vol.141 pp.1120-1132
(Article)
Passive acoustic methods for fine-scale tracking of harbour porpoises in tidal rapids
Jamie Donald John MacAulay, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Douglas Michael Gillespie, Chloe Elizabeth Malinka, Simon Northridge 
Keywords: GC Oceanography, QH301 BiologyNDAS
2016 (2)
vol.7 
(Commissioned report)
Scottish Government Demonstration Strategy
Carol Elizabeth Sparling, Douglas Michael Gillespie, Gordon Drummond Hastie, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Jamie Donald John MacAulay, Chloe Elizabeth Malinka, Mick Wu, Bernie J McConnell 
Keywords: marine renewables, passive acoustic monitoring, active acoustic monitoring, tidal energy, Marine mammalScottish Government
2015 (1)
Methods in Ecology and Evolution
vol.6 pp.38-48
(Article)
2015 (25/9)

(Other contribution)
PAMGuard Beta release 1.14.00
Douglas Michael Gillespie 
Keywords: Software, Cetaceans, Detection, Acoustic
2015 (11)

(Commissioned report)
Tracking harbor porpoises in tidal rapids:
Jamie Donald John MacAulay, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Douglas Michael Gillespie, Chloe Elizabeth Malinka, Mark Johnson, Simon Northridge 
Keywords: NERC
2014 (9)
Methods in Oceanography
vol.10 pp.70-89
(Article)
Assessing the potential of autonomous submarine gliders for ecosystem monitoring across multiple trophic levels (plankton to cetaceans) and pollutants in shallow shelf seas
L. Suberg, R.B. Wynn, J.V.D. Kooij, L. Fernand, S. Fielding, D. Guihen, Douglas Michael Gillespie, Mark Johnson, I.J. Allan, B. Vrana, P.I. Miller, D. Smeed, A.R. Jones 
Keywords: Autonomous underwater vehicles, Submarine glider, Slocum, Ecosystem monitoring, Multiple trophic levelsQH301 Biology
2014 (2)
Biological Conservation
vol.170 pp.338-339
(Letter)
Large scale surveys for cetaceans
Philip Steven Hammond, Douglas Michael Gillespie, Philip Lovell, Filipa Isabel Pereira Samarra, Kelly Macleod, Mark L Tasker, Per Berggren, David Louis Borchers, M Louise Burt, Charles G. M. Paxton, Ana Canadas, Genevieve Desportes, Greg P Donovan, Anita Gilles, Kristina Lehnert, Ursula Siebert, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Russell Leaper, Mardik Leopold, Meike Scheidat, Nils Oien, Vincent Ridoux, Emer Rogan, Henrik Skov, Jonas Teilmann, Olivier Van Canneyt, Jose Antonio Vazquez 
Keywords: Line transect sampling, Survey design, Abundance estimation, Cetacean, Conservation, EU Habitats DirectiveQL Zoology
2014

(Chapter (peer-reviewed))
Tracking technologies for quantifying marine mammal interactions with tidal turbines: pitfalls and possibilities
Gordon Drummond Hastie, Douglas Michael Gillespie, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Jamie Donald John MacAulay, Bernie J McConnell, Carol Elizabeth Sparling 
2013 (1/9)
Journal of the Acoustical Society of America
vol.134 pp.2427-2437
(Article)
Automatic detection and classification of odontocete whistles
Douglas Michael Gillespie, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, P. White 
2013 (8)
Biological Conservation
vol.164 pp.107-122
(Article)
Cetacean abundance and distribution in European Atlantic shelf waters to inform conservation and management
Philip Steven Hammond, Kelly Macleod, Per Berggren, David Louis Borchers, M Louise Burt, Ana Cañadas, Genevieve Desportes, Greg P Donovan, Anita Gilles, Douglas Michael Gillespie, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Lex Hiby, Iwona Kuklik, Russell Leaper, Kristina Lehnert, Mardik Leopold, Philip Lovell, Nils Øien, Charles G. M. Paxton, Vincent Ridoux, Emer Rogan, Filipa Isabel Pereira Samarra, Meike Scheidat, Marina Sequeira, Ursula Siebert, Henrik Skov, Mark Tasker, Jonas Teilmann, Olivier Van Canneyt, José Antonio Vázquez 
Keywords: Conservation status, North Sea, Line transect sampling, SCANS, Harbour porpoise, Bottlenose dolphin, Common dolphin, White-beaked dolphin, Minke whale, Bycatch, Habitats DirectiveQH301 Biology
2013

(Commissioned report)
Methods for tracking fine scale underwater movements of marine mammals around marine tidal devices
Bernie J McConnell, Douglas Michael Gillespie, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Gordon Drummond Hastie, Mark Johnson, Jamie Donald John MacAulay 
2013 (25/12)
Journal of the Acoustical Society of America
vol.134 pp.2469–2476
(Article)
2011
ICES Journal of Marine Science
vol.68 pp.929-936
(Article)
2010 (5)
Journal of Cetacean Research and Management
vol.11 pp.217
(Article)
An integrated data collection system for line transect surveys
Douglas Michael Gillespie, Russell Leaper, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Kelly Macleod 
Keywords: SURVEY–VESSEL, PHOTOGRAMMETRY
2010

(Commissioned report)
Assessment of the impacts and utility of acoustic deterrent devices
Simon Northridge, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Susannah Calderan, Alexander Cargill, Alexander James Coram, Douglas Michael Gillespie, Mike Lonergan, Alice Webb 
Keywords: Scottish Aquaculture Research Forum
2010 (11)
Applied Acoustics
vol.71 pp.1043-1049
(Article)
Comparison of beaked whale detection algorithms
Tina M. Yack, Jay Barlow, Marie A. Roch, Holger Klinck, Steve Martin, David K. Mellinger, Douglas Michael Gillespie 
Keywords: Beaked whale, Classification, Detection, Echolocationl, Passive acoustic monitoring, Towed-arrayAcoustics and Ultrasonics

Contact Details:

Dr Douglas Gillespie
Scottish Oceans Institute
East Sands
University of St Andrews
St Andrews
KY16 8LB
Fife
UK

tel: 01334 462663
fax:
room:
email: dg50@st-andrews.ac.uk

Related:

research@st-andrews
PAMGuard Software
Sea Mammal Research Unit
School of Biology
Scottish Oceans Institute

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