Noise and Vibration Levels in Artificial Polar Bear Dens as Related to Selected Petroleum Exploration and Developmental Activities

  • A.S. Blix
  • J.W. Lentfer
Keywords: Aircraft disturbance, Denning, Environmental impacts, Instruments, Measurement, Noise, Oil well drilling, Polar bears, Seismic surveys, Snow, Vehicles, Vibration, Prudhoe Bay region, Alaska, Prudhoe Bay


The noise and vibration levels resulting from seismic testing, drilling and transport were measured in artificial polar bear dens of Prudhoe Bay, Alaska. It was concluded that the dry and wind-beaten arctic snow muffles both sound and vibrations extremely well and it seems unlikely that polar bears in their dens will be disturbed by the type of petroleum-related activities measured here, providing those activities do not take place within 100 m of the den.

Key words: Ursus marifimus, seismic activity, conservation