While completing a BSc. Degree in Marine Biology from the University of Queensland, Melinda or ‘Mindi’ volunteered on a number of research projects including a bottlenose dolphin acoustic research project in Moreton Bay, the animal care department at Seaworld and completed a research internship at the Dolphin Research Centre in Florida. She then returned back to the University of Queensland to complete an Honours degree, under the supervision of Michael Noad, comparing bottlenose dolphin acoustic behaviour between wild and provisioned populations in Moreton Bay and captive populations in Seaworld.

After a year away travelling, working for the healthy waterways ecosystem health monitoring program and working as a marine research coordinator for All Out Africa in Mozambique, Melinda started a PhD under the supervision of Dr Michael Noad, Dr Rebecca Dunlop and Assoc. Prof. Anne Goldizen (School of Biological Sciences). Her PhD project focused on the stability and progressive change of humpback whale song and social sounds.

Mindi is currently working as a Postdoctoral Fellow with the Ocean Giants Program at the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). Since starting at WCS, she has worked on numerous projects across Africa and also in New York with a broad focus on behavioural ecology, bioacoustics and conservation of marine mammals. Current projects are focused on baseline monitoring of marine mammals to inform management and conservation in data deficient regions, ocean noise issues and potential impacts to cetaceans, characterizing species specific vocal repertoires to inform PAM, fisheries bycatch issues and community education and outreach work. 


Selected Publications

  • Garland, E. C., Goldizen, A., Rekdahl, M. L., Constantine, R., Garrigue, C., Hauser, N. D., Robbins, J., and Noad, M. J. 2011. Dynamic horizontal cultural transmission of humpback whale song at the ocean basin scale. Current Biology 21 (8), 687-691.
  • Rekdahl M., Dunlop R., Goldizen A., and Noad M. 2011. Sequence analysis of non-song social sounds in migrating humpback whales. 19th Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals, Tampa, Florida (Oral presentation).
  • Rekdahl, M., Dunlop R., Goldizen A., Noad M. 2010. Temporal variability in the social vocalization repertoire of humpback whales migrating off the east coast of Australia. European Cetacean Society conference, Stralsund, Germany (Poster presentation).
  • Garland, E.C., Goldizen, A., Cato, D., Rekdahl, M., Baker, C.S., Constantine, R., Garrigue, C., Hauser, N., Mattila, D., Paton, D., Poole, M.M., Robbins, J. and Noad, M.J. 2009. Dynamic cultural exchange of humpback whale song across the western and central South Pacific Ocean. 18th biennial meeting of the Society for Marine Mammalogy, Quebec City, Canada, 12-16 Oct. (Poster presentation).
  • Rekdahl, M.L., Noad, M.J., Dunlop, R.A. and Goldizen, A. 2007. The acoustic behaviour of provisioned and non-provisioned bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in Moreton Bay, Australia. 17th biennial meeting of the Society for Marine Mammalogy, Cape Town, South Africa, 29 Nov to 3 Dec. (Poster presentation).
Featured projects Duration
Humpback whale social sounds