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My research interests include marine mammal hearing and the impact of sound on marine megafauna. Most of my research has focused on testing the hearing of new species of cetaceans such as pilot whales or beaked whales, understanding hearing processes and control mechanisms associated with echolocation. More recently, I have been interested in the behavioral ecology of mysticetes using non-invasive methods such as archival tags and UAVs. 


For publication pdfs, please visit the following links:

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. Zitterbart, D.P, Smith, H.R., Flau, M., Richter, S., Burkhardt, E., Beland, J., Bennett, L., Cammareri, A., Davis, A., Holst, M., Lanfredi, C., Michel, H., Noad, M., Owen, K, Pacini, A and Boebel, O., Scaling the laws of thermal imaging-based whale detection. Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology 

. Götz, T., Pacini, A.F, Nachtigall, P.E., Janik, V, M.. The startle reflex in echolocating odontocetes: basic physiology and practical implications Journal of Experimental Biology 2020 223: jeb208470 doi: 10.1242/jeb.208470 


. Drazen J, Smith C, Gjerde K, Au W, Black J, Carter G, Clark M, Durden J, Dutrieux P, Goetze E, Haddock S, Hatta M, Hauton C, Hill P, Koslow J, Leitner A, Measures C, Pacini A, Parrish F, Peacock T, Perelman J, Sutton T, Taymans C, Tunnicliffe V, Watling L, Yamamoto H, Young E, Ziegler A (2019) Report of the workshop Evaluating the nature of midwater mining plumes and their potential effects on midwater ecosystems. Research Ideas and Outcomes 5: e33527.


· Smith, A.B., Pacini, A., and Nachtigall, P.E., (2018) Modulation rate transfer functions of four species of stranded odontocete (Stenella longirostris, Feresa attenuata, Globicephala melas, Mesoplodon densirostris). Journal of Comparative Physiology A 204(4), 377-389.


· Sysueva, E.V., Nachtigall, P.E., Cranford, T.W., Pacini, A., Allum, C. and Supin, A. Ya. (2018) Auditory sensitivity areas of head to local underwater stimulation in a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) Proceedings of Meetings on Acoustics 173EAA (Vol. 30, No. 1, p. 010003). ASA.


· Nachtigall, P.E., Supin, A.Ya,  Pacini, A. and Kastelein, R. (2017) Four Odontocete Species Change Hearing Levels When Warned of Impending Loud Sound.  Integrative Zoology doi: 10.1111/1749-4877.12286



· Nachtigall, P. E., Supin, A. Y., Pacini, A. F., & Kastelein, R. A. (2016). Conditioned hearing sensitivity change in the harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena). The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 140(2), 960-967.

· Pacini, AF, Nachtigall PE, Smith AB, Suarez LJA, Magno, C, Laule GE, Aragones, LV, Braun R. (2016) Evidence of hearing loss due to dynamite fishing in two species of odontocetes. Proceedings of Meetings on Acoustics 4ENAL 27(1)-010043

· Nachtigall, P. E., Supin, A. Y., Smith, A. B., & Pacini, AF (2016) Expectancy and conditioned hearing levels in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) Journal of experimental biology. 219(6) 844-850

· Nachtigall, PE, Supin A. Ya, Pacini AF and Esteban J.A. Learning and extinction of conditioned hearing sensation change in the beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas) (2016) Journal of Comparative Physiology A 202(2),105-113

- Trenkel, V., Pacini, A. L’acoustique pour détecter et mesurer le vivant (2016) (French) In De l’instrumentation a l’observation, Collection Mers et Océans. A. Monaco and P. Prouzer (eds) Hermes Science Publishing Ltd-Lavoisier: London, UK



· Pacini, A. and Nachtigall, P.E. (2015)  Hearing in Whales and Dolphins: Relevance and Limitations.  In: The Effects of Noise on Aquatic Life II, Popper, A.N. & Hawkins, A.  Springer, Berlin. Pp 801-809

2014 and prior

- Kloepper, LN, Smith, AB, Nachtigall, PE, Buck, JR, Simmons, JA and Pacini AF (2014) Cognitive adaptation of sonar gain control in the bottlenose dolphin. PLoS ONE 9(8): e105938 doi:10.1371/journal.pon.0105938

- Pacini, AF and Nachtigall PE. (2012) Testing the hearing of marine mammals: implications for animal welfare and conservation In: The effects of Noise on Aquatic Life 2nd edition. A.N. Popper and A. Hawkins (eds) Springer: New York

- Pacini, A.F., Nachtigall, P.E., and Kloepper, L.N. (2012) Portable auditory evoked potential system to assess odontocete hearing. In: The Effect of Noise on Aquatic Life 2nd Edition. A.N. Popper and A. Hawkins (eds) Springer: New York, 225-227.

- Mobley J.R. & Pacini A.F. (2012) Aerial Survey monitoring for marine mammals and sea turtles in the Hawaii Range complex in conjunction with a Navy training event 2012 Technical Report HDR inc.submitted in support of 2012 Annual Marine Species Monitoring report for the U.S. Navy’s Hawaii Range
Complex. 39 pages

- Pacini, A. F., Nachtigall, P. E., Quintos, C. T., Schofield, T. D., Look, D. A., Levine, G. A., & Turner, J. P. (2011). Audiogram of a stranded Blainville's beaked whale (Mesoplodon densirostris) measured using auditory evoked potentials. Journal of Experimental Biology, 214(14), 2409-2415.

- A.F. Pacini, P.E. Nachtigall, L.N. Kloepper, M. Linnenschmidt, A. Sogorb and S. Matias Audiogram of a formely stranded long-finned pilot whale (Globicephala melas) measured using auditory evoked potentials (2010) Journal of Experimental Biology, 213: 3138-3143

- T.A Mooney, A.F. Pacini and P.E. Nachtigall (2009) False killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens) echolocation and acoustic disruption: implications for longline bycatch and depredation. Canadian Journal of Zoology 87:726-733

- T.A. Mooney, P.E. Nachtigall, M. Castellote, K.A. Taylor, A.F. Pacini and J.-O Esteban (2008) Hearing pathways and directional sensitivity of the beluga whale Delphinapterus leucas. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 262:108-116

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