Principal Investigator:

20140206 sirovicAna Širović is an Assistant Research Oceanographer at the Marine Physical Laboratory of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. She holds a BA in creative studies with biology emphasis from the University of California Santa Barbara and a PhD in oceanography from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. After her PhD, she worked as a postdoctoral researcher with Dr. David Demer at the Southwest Fisheries Science Center. Subsequently, she spent two and a half years as marine biology faculty at Alaska Pacific University in Anchorage, Alaska, before returning to Scripps in 2011. Dr. Širović is a member of the Acoustical Society of America and the ASA Animal Bioacoustics Technical Committee (term: 2010-2016), American Society of Limnology and Oceanography, and The Oceanography Society. She is currently learning to play the mandolin and can’t decide if she should be learning to play sea shanties or traditional Dalmatian songs.


allyAlly Rice is a Staff Research Associate at the Marine Bioacoustics Laboratory at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. She received her B.A. in Neuroscience and Behavior from Vassar College in New York. Ally first came to SIO in the summer of 2012 as a MPL intern where she worked on a project investigating fin whale song patterns in the North Pacific. After spending a summer at OrcaLab where she used acoustics and land-based observations to identify orcas, she is excited to be back at SIO and is currently working with low frequency data but also finds time to study killer whale ecotypes off US West Coast.


philPhilip Miller is a software engineer with a background in biological databases and genomics. Most recently, he has worked in the Bioengineering Department at UCSD and Sony Electronics. His PhD was done at the Institute for Resource Ecology at the University of British Columbia. Dr. Miller is primarily working on the continued development of the Tethys database, in collaboration with Marie Roch from SDSU.

Post-doctoral scholars:


Jack Butler is a postdoctoral researcher in the Marine Bioacoustics Lab at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. He received his B.S. in Zoology from the University of Florida in 2009 and his PhD in Ecological Sciences from Old Dominion University in 2016. After receiving his PhD, he worked as a Research Biologist for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission before coming to Scripps. Jack’s research focuses on the ecological roles of marine soundscapes, how coastal habitat degradation deteriorates marine soundscapes, and how habitat restoration can aid in their recovery. When he’s not trying to bash MATLAB into submission, he enjoys fishing, diving, or any outdoor activity with his family.

Graduate students:

KC-smallKatherine (KC) Cameron received a B.S. in 2008 from University of Portland and M.S. in 2013 from Clemson University both in electrical engineering with a focus on robotics and intelligent systems. While working as communication engineer with Bonneville Power Administration between these degrees, the desire to study and explore the ocean became clear to KC. Her interests in the ocean and marine life was sparked from growing up on the Oregon coast and commercial fishing in the summers as a teenager. She is funded under a NDSEG fellowship to study the effects of ambient sound on grouper larvae and for localization of a fleet of underwater explorers. Broader interests include ocean technology for biological studies, underwater robotics, and snowboarding and diving.


Leah Lewis is a biological oceanography graduate student at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. She graduated with a B.S. in Marine Biology from the University of Rhode Island, where she researched the effects of ocean acidification in the Narragansett Bay estuary. She then worked as a biological technician with the Northeast Fisheries Science Center in Narragansett, RI where she studied the genetic identification of fish eggs using DNA barcoding, as well as the morphological identification of paralarval cephalopods. Currently, Leah is working on the behavioral context of blue whale calls in Southern California. In her free time, Leah enjoys running, reading, and all things Disney-related.

Pagniello_Sirovic_website_croppedCamille Pagniello is an applied ocean sciences graduate student at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. She recently completed her BSc Honours, Co-op in Marine Biology and Physics with minors in Mathematics and Ocean Sciences (First Class Honours) at Dalhousie University. During her studies, Camille was a NSERC USRA scholar and Dalhousie and Memorial University of Newfoundland, as well as Summer Student Fellow at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution conducting research in the fields of computational geometry, atmospheric physics, biological oceanography, avian acoustics and biology, and ocean acoustics. She also completed a semester abroad as part of the SEA Semester Program (S-250) in which she sailed from San Diego, CA to Papeete, Tahiti. Her current research interests lie within the intersection of acoustics, robotics and marine mammals. Camille has been an active student member of the Marine Technology Society (MTS) since 2010 serving in multiple student leadership positions. She is currently the Student Activities Chair on the Local Organizing Committee for OCEANS ’15 MTS/IEEE Washington, DC.


After getting her B.A. in Journalism from Duquesne University, Angela Szesciorka earned her M.Sc. in Marine Science from Moss Landing Marine Laboratories. Under Dr. James T. Harvey, and in collaboration with John Calambokidis of Cascadia Research Collective, she developed new tag attachments to study humpback whale dive behavior and response to close approaches with commercial ships. She then went on to study grey whale foraging in Puget Sound and blue whale behavioral response to Navy sonar in southern California with Cascadia Research. As a Dr. Nancy Foster scholar at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Angela is working on blue and fin whale acoustic and foraging behavior, and the potential impacts of anthropogenic noise.

Undergraduate students:

Mukta Kelkar is an Environmental Systems major at UCSD and she has been in the lab since spring 2015. After a spring studying abroad in Costa Rica, she is back to study the impacts of anthropogenic sounds on blue whale calling.

Lab alumni:

Angus Thies is a Marine Biology major at UCSD who worked in the lab during 2015-2016 (with a hiatus during his quarter abroad at Turks and Caicos). He worked on the detection of D calls, and identification of fin whale song patterns in Southern California.

Talia Dominello was an intern in the lab from 2014-2016, when she decided on a tack in her career, and she is now studying to become a physical therapist at CSU Long Beach.

Liz Vu was a PhD student at Scripps and an “honorary member” of the Marine Bioacoustics Lab. She graduated in 2015 and is now pursuing her passion in making high quality education more available worldwide at Learning Equality.

Alan Mason was a summer MPL intern in 2015 who came from Ohio State University. He spent the summer working with KC and helping her in the study of temporal patterns in grouper calls from Little Cayman.

Arina Favilla was a summer SURF intern in 2015 who came to us from the University of Miami. She worked on fine-scale description of blue whale songs in the North Pacific. She won an award for her poster presentation of the work at the SACNAS conference!

Chiara Gambini was a visiting MSc student from the University of Bologna, Italy in 2014. She tested the performance of the blue whale D calls detectors.

Leah Varga was a Research Associate in the Marine Bioacoustics Lab at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in 2013-14.  After obtaining a Master’s at SIO, she is currently working at the Scripps Whale Acoustics Lab, but she still stops by to say hi.

Emily Chou was an intern in the lab during 2013 and 2014, while she was an undergraduate student at UC San Diego majoring in Environmental Systems: Ecology, Behavior and Evolution with a minor in Linguistics. She worked on analyses relating blue whale calls and environmental factors. She is now a graduate student at Columbia University.

Mattie Parsell was a Research Associate in the lab in the spring of 2013, before moving to DC to pursue her interests in science education and outreach.



Behavioral Acoustic Ecology Lab at SIO
Jaffe Lab at SIO
Whale Acoustics Lab at SIO
Curt Schurgers from Cal IT2
Marie Roch from San Diego State University
John Calambokidis, Cascadia Research Collective
Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
Southwest Fisheries Science Center
Semmens Lab at SIO
Ed Parnell at SIO
Tyler Helble, SPAWAR
Don Ross
Mark McDonald at Whale Acoustics