By LYNDA V. MAPES
The Seattle Times
ABOARD THE SOUNDGUARDIAN, Puget Sound (AP) — A trio of hydrophones rests on the sea bottom, recording the sounds of Washington’s Puget Sound, including endangered southern resident orcas. The Seattle Times reports the listening array, developed and deployed by SMRU Consulting, is attached to a buoy that marks its location north of Seattle’s Carkeek Park. The equipment will be in place for three months, in a proof-of-concept experiment to determine if the hydrophones and software can readily pick up the sounds of orcas, record underwater noise and share the data through a cellular transmitter. If it works, listening arrays can supplement orca sightings by human observers already being used by the Washington State Ferries to steer clear of the killer whales.