Harald yurk

school of environmental science

Areas of interest

- Animal Acoustic Signaling - Evolution & Function
- Marine Mammal Hearing, Communication and Social Evolution.
- Marine Mammal Noise Impact Assessment, especially:
- Noise Injury and Disturbance (direct and indirect effects)
- Behavioural Responses
- Noise Perception (eg. Masking)
- Population Effects
- Ecosystem and Habitat Effects incl. loss of suitable acoustic habitat


Harald Yurk joined the Ecosystem Science Division of Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) as a physical scientist in 2017 after having worked for a number of years at environmental consulting firms (e.g. JASCO Applied Sciences and SMRU Marine). He held positions as a senior research scientist, behavioural ecologist and bioacoustician. His current work focusses on impact of anthropogenic noise on the signals of marine mammals and on the degradation of acoustic habitat of all marine life due to anthropogenic noise. Harald has over 30 years of experience in studying marine mammal acoustic signals through his work for DFO, the University of British Columbia and the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre (now OceanWise) as well as other environmental organizations in Canada and the US. He also worked as a science instructor at the University of British Columbia and the Simon Fraser University where he held an Adjunct affiliation with the Faculty of Environment between 2010 and 2013. Harald has broad field experience focusing on designing acoustic experiments to determine the influences of the marine environment on signal design and the effects of noise on signal propagation in the marine environment. He also designs remote underwater acoustic monitoring systems. His experiences further include a range of topics outside those related to sound impact which resulted from his studies on the evolution and ecology of animal behaviour with a focus on social learning as an evolutionary pathway of non-genetically inherited traits.


This instructor is currently not teaching any courses.