Dr Mark Johnson:
Senior Research Fellow

Research Overview:
Dr Mark Johnson

Dr Mark Johnson
Scottish Oceans Institute
East Sands
University of St Andrews
St Andrews
KY16 8LB

tel: 01334 462624
fax: 01334 463443

Related Content:

Sound Tags

Sea Mammal Research Unit
Public Engagement and Recruitment Committee
School of Biology
Scottish Oceans Institute

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My research is centered on developing high-resolution methods for studying animals in the wild, and interpreting the data from these. I am especially interested in sound production, foraging, locomotion, and echolocation in marine mammals. Aquatic animals are challenging to study at this level of detail because they spend so much of their lives out of sight. Drawing from my background in electronic engineering, my approach is to create miniature data logging platforms combining multiple synchronized sensors to sample the actions of marine animals. Because sound travels much further than light underwater, high bandwidth sound and movement sensing tags (DTags) have proven to be particularly useful for studying whales and dolphins. These tags have now been applied to more than 20 species of marine mammals to study a broad range of natural behaviours as well as behavioural responses to human-sourced sound.


Recent publications listed in research@st-andrews
Sørensen, PM, Wisniewska, DM, Jensen, FH, Johnson, M, Teilmann, J & Madsen, PT 2018, 'Click communication in wild harbour porpoises (Phocoena phocoena)' Scientific Reports, vol 8, 9702. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-28022-8
Wisniewska, DM, Johnson, M, Teilmann, J, Siebert, U, Galatius, A, Dietz, R & Madsen, PT 2018, 'High rates of vessel noise disrupt foraging in wild harbour porpoises (Phocoena phocoena)' Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, vol 285, no. 1872, 20172314. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2017.2314