Sound production by many fish species has been studied extensively, but little is known about sound production by rockfishes (genus Sebastes), and only a few species have been reported to be soniferous. To determine if additional rockfish species produce sounds, passive acoustic recordings were made during 2007/08 at Hubbs-SeaWorld Research Institute and Southwest Fisheries Science Center in tanks containing Bocaccio (S. paucispinis), Cowcod (S. levis), Starry Rockfish (S. constellatus), and Sunset Rockfish (S. crocotulus). Data were collected using pre-amplified hydrophones (HTI-94-SSQ) and digitized at sample rates of 44,100 or 8,000 Hz (using an Edirol R-09 recorder or Edirol UA-5 sound card and Ishmael software, respectively). Three distinct sounds were recorded in tanks containing only S. paucispinis and two of those sounds occurred at different rates during light and dark conditions. Their common characteristics were low frequency (below 800 Hz), short duration (<4 s), and low source levels (103–113 dB re: 1 µPa at 1 m). Also, there was evidence one or more other species produced sounds. These findings indicate that more rockfishes produce sounds, and suggest passive acoustics could be a useful tool for remotely monitoring their populations.
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