#MarineWildlife - Spanish researchers have identified a link between a ban on the use of sonar in waters around the Canary Islands 15 years ago and a reduction in whale strandings in the same region.
The Independent reports on the study from the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria that suggests vulnerable deep-diving species, such as beaked whales, respond to the stress of sonar pulses by fleeing to deeper waters — putting them at increased physical risk from the increases pressures below.
The scientists also recommend a ban on “mid-frequency active sonar” where mass strandings are prevalent.
Other experts have cited the findings as further evidence that seaborne military exercises using sonar as are direct threat to marine wildlife and in particular beaked whales — the subject of a devastating mass stranding across Scottish and Irish waters last year.
Tests on tissue samples from stranded beaked whale carcasses along the Scottish coast ruled out disease as a cause of death.
Britain's Royal Navy has denied its use of sonar is responsible for the “unusual mortality event” — regarding which the Irish State announced it would assist in investigations.
The Independent has much more on the latest findings HERE.