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NOAA's national marine sanctuary offices and visitor centers are closed to the public while the waters remain open for responsible use in accordance with CDC guidance and local regulations. More information on the response from NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries can be found on


Ambient Noise

In 1996 through 1999, researchers from the National Undersea Research Center and the North Atlantic and Great Lakes Aquanaut Program sampled summertime noise levels at six sites in the SBNMS to address growing concerns regarding possible underwater noise impacts to sanctuary species.  Sampling locations were chosen to coincide with high levels of whale-watching vessel activity (central) and high concentrations of large commercial vessel traffic (southern).  Mean noise levels were estimated at 50Hz, 100Hz and 500Hz.  The study found noise levels over the four consecutive summers to be relatively consistent and to be highest at 50Hz.

Previous Acoustics
Summer ambient noise sampling locations 1996-1999.

For more information on this study see
Scheifele, P.M. and M. Darre (2005).  Noise levels and sources in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary and the St. Lawrence River Estuary.  Marine Conservation Series MSD-05-1. U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Marine Sanctuaries Division, Silver Spring, MD. 26pp.





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