Eco-acoustics: stakes, theory, tools & methods (Field Trip) (Weeks 4 & 8, 6 ECTS)


This two-week module will consist of a field trip at the heart of the Jura Natural Park followed by one week in the lab. We will review the science behind eco-acoustics.  We will see the principles, methods and applications of this exciting emerging field. We will see how we can assess the biodiversity based on sounds emanating from a variety of species and environments. We will analyse the relationship between eco-acoustics and bioacoustics while also addressing key concepts such as landscape ecology and behavioural ecology. We will also discuss the areas for potential future research in eco-acoustics including challenges in species conservation and soundscape conservation. In the mornings, key theoretical notions will be presented by specialist speakers and each afternoon a more practical part will be carried. During this field- and computer-based practical sessions we will review cutting edge methods and tools for the implementation of a study for the analysis of song and for the measurement of biodiversity, including the spatiotemporal sampling strategy.

Research talks on, e.g.,  the use of eco-acoustic methods to survey the impacts of climate change on biodiversity, on the analysis of the acoustic functionality of ecological corridors, or on soundscape conservation will expose students directly to current research in these fast-expanding areas of eco-acoustics.




Provisional Schedule

Field trip (Jura):

Monday 4th October

Morning Lecture: Introduction to Ecoacoustics (F. Sebe & J. Sueur).

Afternoon Practical:  Signal processing with seewave R package, time frequency analysis and visualization, ecoacoustic analysis. Projects launch (F. Sebe & J. Sueur).


Tuesday 5th October

Morning Lecture: Presentation of “dB@risoux” long-term project of biodiversity monitoring (F. Sebe).

Afternoon Practical:  Presentation of the material and implementation of a study with autonomous recorders. Recording the soundscape (F. Sebe & Sylvain Haupert).


Wednesday 6th October 

Morning Lecture: Soundscape, noise, and Biodiversity (F. Sebe).

Afternoon Practical:  Assessment of Biodiversity index, mapping the acoustic diversity on the Rissoux forest, detection and classification methods (F. Sebe & Sylvain Haupert).


Thursday 7th October

Morning Lecture: Acoustic survey of animal populations: Individual signature and censusing Galliformes (F. Sebe).

Afternoon Practical: Search for an index of presence of Galliformes in the field & Recording of deer vocalisation. Recovery of song recorders in the field and song analyses (F. Sebe).


Friday 8th October

Morning Lecture: Research talks by guest researcher(s).

Afternoon Practical: Tutored project.


Please note that Monday 1st November a national holiday in France.


Back to the University:

Tuesday 2nd November

Morning Lecture: Acoustic survey of animal populations: Detection and automatic classification of bats echolocation calls (Yves Bas).

Afternoon Practical: Classification of bats echolocation calls and bats recordings (Yves Bas).


Wednesday 3rd November

Morning Lecture:  Active space and detection space (A. Guibard & F. Sebe).

Afternoon Practical: Propagation experimentation in the field (A. Guibard & F. Sebe).

Thursday 4th November

Morning Lecture: Sound localization by triangulation (C. Huetz).

Afternoon Practical: Sound localization in the field (C. Huetz & F. Sebe).

Friday 5th November

Morning Lecture: Future research in applied ecoacoustics for species and soundscape conservation (F. Sebe).


The final mark of this module will be based on a small research project involving the tools and methods, and data that were introduced during the two weeks.  Each group of four students will produce a poster and present it orally (20 minutes per group, 5 minutes per student). The mark will reflect the quality of the common poster and the quality of the individual oral delivery.

Organisers and tutors : F. Sèbe.

Tutors: Y. Bas, S. Haupert, C. Huetz & J. Sueur.

Demonstrators: A. Guibard

Learning outcomes

By the end of the module, a successful student should be able to:

1. Record soundscapes and measure biodiversity from soundscapes.

2. Demonstrate a good understanding of tools for analysing soundscapes. 

3. Demonstrate familiarity with main issues and current topics relating to eco-acoustics and challenges in species conservation and soundscape conservation.