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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 608:183-197 (2019)  -  DOI:

Acoustic fish communities: sound diversity of rocky habitats reflects fish species diversity

Elena Desiderà1,2,3,4, Paolo Guidetti3,5, Pieraugusto Panzalis6, Augusto Navone6, Cathy-Anna Valentini-Poirrier7, Pierre Boissery7, Cédric Gervaise1, Lucia Di Iorio1,8,*

1CHORUS Institute, Phelma Minatec, 38016 Grenoble, France
2GIPSA-Lab, Grenoble INP, University Grenoble Alpes, Grenoble Campus, 38402 Saint Martin d’Hères, France
3Université Côte d’Azur, CNRS, FRE 3729 ECOMERS, Parc Valrose, 06108 Nice, France
4Department of Biology, University of Padova, 35121 Padova, Italy
5CoNISMa, Interuniversity National Consortium for Marine Sciences, 00196 Rome, Italy
6Marine Protected Area of Tavolara-Punta Coda Cavallo, 07026 Olbia, Italy
7Agence de l’Eau Rhône Méditerranée Corse, Imm Le Noailles, 13001 Marseille, France
8Foundation of the Grenoble Institute of Technology, 38031 Grenoble, France
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Assessing fish biodiversity patterns is a major concern in aquatic science and conservation. To be effectively used, fish diversity assessments benefit from the use of integrated complementary approaches. Passive acoustics has received increasing attention as a non-invasive, long-term monitoring tool, as it uses biological sounds produced incidentally or intentionally as natural tags to identify and estimate animal diversity. In the marine environment, there is little evidence about the link between taxonomic diversity (different species) and acoustic diversity (different sound types). Here we used underwater visual census fish data collected over multiple years from 3 sites within a Mediterranean Marine Protected Area as comprehensive information on local fish assemblages to be compared with acoustic recordings obtained in September 2015. Richness, diversity and community similarity indices as well as abundance analyses revealed a strong relationship between taxonomic diversity and acoustic diversity. Overall, acoustic communities showed pronounced differences between the study sites that were not observed in the respective taxonomic assemblages. Despite the lower number of sound type categories (12) compared to taxa (53) and the short recording period, passive acoustics showed a high discriminating potential, which supports its suitability as a complementary approach to visual-based surveys. The fish sound repertoire established here was organized into a dichotomous tree based on acoustic characteristics that are valuable for the development of automatic acoustic biodiversity appraisal tools for resource monitoring and management.

KEY WORDS: Biodiversity · Fish sounds · Species richness · Biophony · Underwater visual census · Passive acoustic monitoring · Soundscape · Community ecology

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Cite this article as: Desiderà E, Guidetti P, Panzalis P, Navone A and others (2019) Acoustic fish communities: sound diversity of rocky habitats reflects fish species diversity. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 608:183-197.

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