The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America (2017)

DOI: 10.1121/1.5011673


The vaquita is a critically endangered species of porpoise. It produces echolocation clicks, making it a good candidate for passive acoustic monitoring. A systematic grid of sensors has been deployed for 3 months annually since 2011; results from 2016 are reported here. Statistical models (to compensate for non-uniform data loss) show an overall decline in the acoustic detection rate between 2015 and 2016 of 49% (95% credible interval 82% decline to 8% increase), and total decline between 2011 and 2016 of over 90%. Assuming the acoustic detection rate is proportional to population size, approximately 30 vaquita (95% credible interval 8–96) remained in November 2016.