Underwater noise of research vessels: review and recommendations
The formation of the Study Group on Research Vessel Noise came about because of increasing concern over the effects of underwater noise radiated from research vessels. Evidence has been steadily accumulating of adverse fish reaction to some vessels. For the purposes of fisheries research it is important that the natural distribution of fish should be disturbed as little as possible during population surveys, regardless of whether the sampling is by means of trawl, or acoustic methods. In this connection the statement has been made that, "scientists making underwater observations and measurements need quiet vessels for the same reason that astronomers have to site their telescopes on mountain tops, that is, to prevent the source of energy they need to measure from being obscured by other unwanted sources of this energy" (noise). The needs of the fisheries scientist go further, because they are seeking an elusive prey, sensitive to noise, not inanimate objects.