We understand that pond restoration has a dramatic effect on the species richness and biodiversity of farmland ponds and that our research has shown this to be true for aquatic plants, amphibians, fish and insects.

However, perhaps it may be possible to measure these changes in diversity by simply listening to the sounds of a pond?

PhD student, Jack Greenhalgh, is exploring just that.

Underwater sounds from a Norfolk farmland pond during the BIG50

Bioacoustics (the study of sounds produced by animals) has been used in ecosystems such as woodlands, coral reefs and tropical rainforests to observe the acoustic diversity emitted by the fauna present. However, freshwater ecosystems have been largely overlooked in spite of their of accessibility.

Visual representation of an insect sound from a pond

Jack’s research is therefore exploring the unknown underwater soundscapes of ponds before and after restoration. His initial research indicates that restored ponds are a cacophony of underwater life, full of biological information waiting to be deciphered.

Jack Greenhalgh explaining underwater bioacoustics

You can find out more about Jack’s research at the University of Bristol on his webpage.