Measuring Hearing in Wild Beluga Whales. Academic Article uri icon


  • We measured the hearing abilities of seven wild beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) during a collection-and-release experiment in Bristol Bay, AK. Here we summarize the methods and initial data from one animal and discuss the implications of this experiment. Audiograms were collected from 4 to 150 kHz. The animal with the lowest threshold heard best at 80 kHz and demonstrated overall good hearing from 22 to 110 kHz. The robustness of the methodology and data suggest that the auditory evoked potential audiograms can be incorporated into future collection-and-release health assessments. Such methods may provide high-quality results for multiple animals, facilitating population-level audiograms and hearing measures in new species.

publication date

  • 2016