Profile

Prof Vincent Janik

Prof Vincent Janik
Professor of Biology
Director of Scottish Oceans Institute


  • 1992 German Masters degree in Biology (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany)
  • 1998 PhD (University of St Andrews,UK)
  • 1998-2000 German National Merit Foundation Postdoctoral Investigator (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, USA)
  • 2001 Marie-Curie Postdoctoral Investigator (University of St Andrews, UK)
  • 2002-2009 Royal Society University Research Fellow (University of St Andrews, UK)
  • 2009/2010 Fellow of the Wisseschaftskolleg Berlin - Centre for Advanced Study, Germany
  • 2009-2014 Reader in Biology (University of St Andrews, UK)
  • since 2014 Professor in Biology (University of St Andrews, UK)

I am working in the field of animal communication, specializing in marine mammals. My main research interest is the evolution of complexity in communication systems and how this complexity can affect social interaction. This work takes two different approaches. I investigate environmental constraints that influence the design of vocal communication systems and the underlying cognitive skills required to overcome or circumvent such constraints. Much of this work concentrates on vocal communication in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). This species combines the ability of vocal learning with complex cognitive skills that exceed those of most other animals. Comparative work focuses on grey and harbour seals as well as other dolphin species. I am a member of the Sea Mammal Research Unit and the Centre for Social Learning and Cognitive Evolution. If you want to join my group, please click here.

source: symbiosis

Research Overview:

I am interested in the evolution of complexity in communication systems and how this complexity can affect social interaction. This work takes two different approaches. On the one hand I investigate environmental constraints that influence the design of vocal communication systems, and on the other I study the underlying cognitive skills required to overcome or circumvent such constraints. Much of this work concentrates on vocal communication in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). This species combines the ability of vocal learning with complex cognitive skills that exceed those of most other animals. Furthermore, dolphins rely almost exclusively on acoustic communication which avoids the difficulties connected with studying multi-modal communication systems.

 

Recent publications


20  (of 82 published available) for vj. (source: University of St Andrews PURE)
Please click title of any item for full details.

2019
vol.1 pp.539-549
(Chapter)
Individual Signatures in Animal Groups: Cetaceans
Laela S. Sayigh, Vincent Janik 
2019 (1)
Ecology and Evolution
vol.9 pp.533-544
(Article)
Variations in age- and sex-specific survival rates help explain population trend in a discrete marine mammal population
Monica Arso Civil, Barbara Cheney, Valentina Islas-Villanueva, Jefferson Alden Graves, Vincent Janik, Paul M Thompson, Philip Steven Hammond 
Keywords: Calf survival, Capture-recapture, Mortality rate, Population dynamics, Sex-specific survival, Tursiops
2018 (24/10)
Marine Mammal Science
vol.34 pp.963-978
(Article)
2018 (1)
Journal of Applied Ecology
vol.55 pp.396-404
(Review article)
Marine mammals and sonar
Catriona M Harris, Len Thomas, Erin Falcone, John Hildebrand, Dorian Houser, Petter Kvadsheim, Frans-Peter A. Lam, Patrick Miller, David J. Moretti, Andrew Read, Hans Slabbekoorn, Brandon L. Southall, Peter Lloyd Tyack, Douglas Wartzok, Vincent Janik 
Keywords: Sonar, Cetaceans, Human disturbance, Impact assessment, Anti-predator response, Anthropogenic noise, Behavioural response, Marine mammals, Dose response

Journal of Experimental Biology
vol.221 
(Article)
Selective reactions to different killer whale call categories in two delphinid species
Matthew T. Bowers, Ari S. Friedlaender, Vincent Janik, Douglas P. Nowacek, Nicola Quick, Brandon L. Southall, Andrew Read 
Keywords: Antipredator behavior, Acoustic discrimination, Non-linear acousitcs, Pilot whales, Risso's dolphins
2017
pp.66-91
(Chapter)
Cetacean Communication
Laela Sayigh, Vincent Janik 
2017 (11)
Animal Cognition
vol.20 pp.1067-1079
(Article)
2016 (12)
Journal of Comparative Physiology A: Neuroethology, Sensory, Neural, and Behavioral Physiology
vol.202 pp.859-868
(Article)
Aerial low frequency hearing in captive and free-ranging harbour seals (Phoca vitulina) using auditory brainstem responses
Klaus Lucke, Gordon Drummond Hastie, Kerstin Ternes, Bernie J McConnell, Simon Moss, Debbie JF Russell, Heike Weber, Vincent Janik 
Keywords: Harbour seal , Phoca vitulina, Hearing, ABR, Low-frequencyNERC
2016 (12)
Journal of Applied Ecology
vol.53 pp.1642-1652
(Article)
Avoidance of wind farms by harbour seals is limited to pile driving activities
Debbie JF Russell, Gordon Drummond Hastie, David Thompson, Vincent Janik, Philip Steven Hammond, Lindesay Alexandra Sarah Scott-Hayward, Jason Matthiopoulos, Esther Lane Jones, Bernie J McConnell 
Keywords: Complex Region Spatial Smoother, Disturbance, Marine renewables, Marine spatial planning, Pinnipeds, Renewable energy, Spatially Adaptive Local Smoothing Algorithm, Spatially adaptive smoothing , Underwater noiseNERC, BEIS/DECC, Scottish Government
2016 (7)
Animal Cognition
vol.19 pp.847-853
(Article)
2016 (1/1)
Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
vol.875 pp.425-430
(Article)
Multiple-pulse sounds and seals: results of a harbour seal (Phoca vitulina) telemetry study during windfarm construction
Gordon Drummond Hastie, Debbie JF Russell, Bernie J McConnell, David Thompson, Vincent Janik 
Keywords: NERC
2016 (20/6)
Animal Conservation
vol.19 pp.212-221
(Article)
2016 (1/1)
pp.1105-1111
(Conference contribution)
2016 (20/6)
Animal Conservation
vol.19 pp.225-226
(Article)
2015 (11)
Journal of Comparative Psychology
vol.129 pp.412-420
(Article)
2015 (7)
Animal Cognition
vol.18 pp.969-974
(Article)
2015 (7/1)
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
vol.282 
(Article)
2015 (5/1)
Current Biology
vol.25 pp.R7-R8
(Article)
Play in dolphins
Vincent Janik 
2015 (6)
Journal of Applied Ecology
vol.52 pp.631-640
(Article)
Sound exposure in harbour seals during the installation of an offshore wind farm
Gordon Drummond Hastie, Debbie JF Russell, Bernie J McConnell, Simon Moss, David Thompson, Vincent Janik 
Keywords: Wind farms, Hearing, Marine animals, Pile driving, Pinnipeds, Renewable energy, Underwater noiseNERC

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