Fishy chatter

Scientists record unidentified noises in the deep sea

By Stephen Ornes, 11:46 AM March 6, 2012

Rodney Rountree thinks listening to fish is a good way to get to know them. Hundreds, if not thousands, of fish species make sounds, says Rountree, a fish biologist at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. And he should know: He’s been eavesdropping on their chirps, grunts and farts for more than 10 years, mostly in shallow waters.

In 2005, Rountree launched an experiment to listen to deep-sea fishes. He and his colleagues placed hydrophones, or microphones that pick up underwater s...

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