Many creatures, including the myopic rhinoceros, depend upon hearing and smell to determine their environment. Nature is dominated by meaningful biophonic and geophonic information quickly absorbed by soil and vegetation, while anthrophonic urban soundscapes exhibit vastly different physical and semantic characteristics, sound repeatedly reflecting off hard geometric surfaces, distorting and reverberating, and becoming noise. Noise damages humans physiologically, including reproductively, and likely damages other mammals. Rhinos vocalize sonically and infrasonically, but audiograms are unavailable. They generally breed poorly in urban zoos, where infrasonic noise can be chronic. Biological and social factors are studied, but little attention if any is paid to soundscape. We present a methodology to analyze the soundscapes of captive animals according to their hearing range. Sound metrics determined from recordings at various institutions can then be compared and correlations with the health and wellbeing of their animals can be sought. To develop this methodology we studied the sonic, infrasonic, and seismic soundscape experienced by the white rhinos at Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, one of the few U.S. facilities to successfully breed this species in recent years. Future analysis can seek particular parameters known to be injurious to human mammals, plus parameters known to invoke response in animals.
Meeting abstract. No PDF available.
What comprises a healthy soundscape for the captive Southern White Rhinoceros (Ceratotherium simum simum)?
Suzi Wiseman, Preston S. Wilson, Frank Sepulveda; What comprises a healthy soundscape for the captive Southern White Rhinoceros (Ceratotherium simum simum)?. J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 1 October 2014; 136 (4_Supplement): 2305. https://doi.org/10.1121/1.4900340
Download citation file: