Prof Vincent Janik

Prof Vincent Janik
Professor of Biology
Director of Scottish Oceans Institute


  • 1992 German Masters degree in Biology (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany)
  • 1998 PhD (University of St Andrews,UK)
  • 1998-2000 German National Merit Foundation Postdoctoral Investigator (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, USA)
  • 2001 Marie-Curie Postdoctoral Investigator (University of St Andrews, UK)
  • 2002-2009 Royal Society University Research Fellow (University of St Andrews, UK)
  • 2009/2010 Fellow of the Wisseschaftskolleg Berlin - Centre for Advanced Study, Germany
  • 2009-2014 Reader in Biology (University of St Andrews, UK)
  • since 2014 Professor in Biology (University of St Andrews, UK)

I am working in the field of animal communication, specializing in marine mammals. My main research interest is the evolution of complexity in communication systems and how this complexity can affect social interaction. This work takes two different approaches. I investigate environmental constraints that influence the design of vocal communication systems and the underlying cognitive skills required to overcome or circumvent such constraints. Much of this work concentrates on vocal communication in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). This species combines the ability of vocal learning with complex cognitive skills that exceed those of most other animals. Comparative work focuses on grey and harbour seals as well as other dolphin species. I am a member of the Sea Mammal Research Unit and the Centre for Social Learning and Cognitive Evolution. If you want to join my group, please click here.

source: symbiosis


50 (of 89 /dk/atira/pure/researchoutput/status/published available) for vj (source: University of St Andrews PURE)
Please click title of any item for full details

Bottlenose dolphin calves have multi-year elevations of plasma oxytocin compared to all other age classes Kelly Robinson, Kerstin Ternes, Neil Hazon, Randall Wells, Vincent Janik
General and Comparative Endocrinology 2020 vol. 286
Conditioned variation in heart rate during static breath-holds in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) Andreas Fahlman, Bruno Cozzi, Mercy Manley, Sandra Jabas, Marek Malik, Ashley Blawas, Vincent Janik
Frontiers in Physiology 2020 vol. 11
Repeated downsweep vocalizations of the Araguaian river dolphin, Inia araguaiaensis Gabriel Melo Alves dos Santos, Sam F. Walmsley, Miriam Marmontel, Marcelo Oliveira-da-Costa , Vincent Janik
Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 2020 vol. 147 pp. 748-756
Effects of impulsive noise on marine mammals Gordon Drummond Hastie, Nathan Merchant, Thomas Goetz, Debbie JF Russell, Paul Thompson, Vincent Janik
Ecological Applications 2019 vol. 29
Formant modification through vocal production learning in gray seals Vincent Janik
Current Biology 2019 vol. 29 pp. 2244-2249
Individual Signatures in Animal Groups: Cetaceans Laela S. Sayigh, Vincent Janik
2019 vol. 1 pp. 539-549
Managing the effects of noise from ship traffic, seismic surveying and construction on marine mammals in Antarctica Christine Erbe, Michael Dähne, Jonathan Charles David Gordon, Heike Herata, Dorian Houser, Sven Koschinski, Russell Leaper, Robert McCauley, Brian Miller, Mirjam Müller, Anita Murray, Julie Nicola Oswald, Amy Scholik-Schlomer, Max Schuster, Ilse van Opzeeland, Vincent Janik
Frontiers in Marine Science 2019 vol. 6
Variations in age- and sex-specific survival rates help explain population trend in a discrete marine mammal population Monica Arso Civil, Barbara Cheney, Valentina Islas-Villanueva, Jefferson Alden Graves, Vincent Janik, Paul M Thompson, Philip Steven Hammond
Ecology and Evolution 2019 vol. 9 pp. 533-544
Clicks of dwarf sperm whales (Kogia sima) Karlina Merkens, David Mann, Vincent Janik, Marie Hill, Erin Oleson
Marine Mammal Science 2018 vol. 34 pp. 963-978
Marine mammals and sonar Catriona M Harris, Len Thomas, Erin Falcone, John Hildebrand, Dorian Houser, Petter Kvadsheim, Frans-Peter A. Lam, Patrick James Miller, David J. Moretti, Andrew Read, Hans Slabbekoorn, Brandon L. Southall, Peter Lloyd Tyack, Douglas Wartzok, Vincent Janik
Journal of Applied Ecology 2018 vol. 55 pp. 396-404
Can fear conditioning repel California sea lions from fishing activities? Schakner Zachary, Thomas Goetz, Vincent Janik, Dan Blumstein
Animal Conservation 2017 vol. 20 pp. 425-432
Cetacean Communication Laela Sayigh, Vincent Janik
2017 pp. 66-91
What's in a voice? Dolphins do not use voice cues for individual recognition Laela Sayigh, Randall Wells, Vincent Janik
Animal Cognition 2017 vol. 20 pp. 1067-1079
Aerial low frequency hearing in captive and free-ranging harbour seals (Phoca vitulina) using auditory brainstem responses Klaus Lucke, Gordon Drummond Hastie, Kerstin Ternes, Bernie J McConnell, Simon Moss, Debbie JF Russell, Heike Weber, Vincent Janik
Journal of Comparative Physiology A: Neuroethology, Sensory, Neural, and Behavioral Physiology 2016 vol. 202 pp. 859-868
Avoidance of wind farms by harbour seals is limited to pile driving activities Debbie JF Russell, Gordon Drummond Hastie, David Thompson, Vincent Janik, Philip Steven Hammond, Lindesay Alexandra Sarah Scott-Hayward, Jason Matthiopoulos, Esther Lane Jones, Bernie J McConnell
Journal of Applied Ecology 2016 vol. 53 pp. 1642-1652
Evidence suggests vocal production learning in a cross-fostered Risso’s dolphin (Grampus griseus) Livio Favaro, Stefano Furlati, Daniela Pessani, Vidal Martin, Vincent Janik
Animal Cognition 2016 vol. 19 pp. 847-853
Multiple-pulse sounds and seals: results of a harbour seal (Phoca vitulina) telemetry study during windfarm construction Gordon Drummond Hastie, Debbie JF Russell, Bernie J McConnell, David Thompson, Vincent Janik
Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology 2016 vol. 875 pp. 425-430
The startle reflex in acoustic deterrence: an approach with universal applicability? Thomas Goetz, Vincent Janik
Animal Conservation 2016 vol. 19 pp. 225-226
Can a gray seal (Halichoerus grypus) generalize call classes? Mafalda de Freitas, Mick Wu, Vincent Janik
Journal of Comparative Psychology 2015 vol. 129 pp. 412-420
Come dine with me Vincent Janik
Animal Cognition 2015 vol. 18 pp. 969-974
Grey seals use anthropogenic signals from acoustic tags to locate fish Thomas Goetz, Volker Bernt Deecke, Vincent Janik
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 2015 vol. 282
Play in dolphins Vincent Janik
Current Biology 2015 vol. 25 pp. R7-R8
Sound exposure in harbour seals during the installation of an offshore wind farm Gordon Drummond Hastie, Debbie JF Russell, Bernie J McConnell, Simon Moss, David Thompson, Vincent Janik
Journal of Applied Ecology 2015 vol. 52 pp. 631-640
Target-specific acoustic predator deterrence in the marine environment Thomas Goetz, Vincent Janik
Animal Conservation 2015 vol. 18 pp. 102-111
Behavioral responses by grey seals (Halichoerus grypus) to high frequency sonar Gordon Drummond Hastie, Carl Robert Donovan, Thomas Goetz, Vincent Janik
Marine Pollution Bulletin 2014 vol. 79 pp. 205-210
Cetacean vocal learning and communication Vincent Janik
Current Opinion in Neurobiology 2014 vol. 28 pp. 60-65
Long-term trends in the use of a protected area by small cetaceans in relation to changes in population status Barbara Cheney, Ross Corkery, John Durban, Kate Grellier, Philip Steven Hammond, Valentina Islas Villanueva, Vincent Janik, Susan Lusseau, Kim Parsons, Ben Wilson, Paul Thompson
Global Ecology and Conservation 2014 vol. 2 pp. 118-128
Marine mammals trace anthropogenic structures at sea Debbie JF Russell, Sophie Brasseur, David Thompson, Gordon Drummond Hastie, Vincent Janik, Geert Aarts, Brett Thomas McClintock, Jason Matthiopoulos, Simon Moss, Bernie J McConnell
Current Biology 2014 vol. 24 pp. R638-R639
Signature whistles in free ranging populations of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops aduncus Victor Cockcroft, Elizabeth R. Hawkins, Michelle Lemon Blewitt, Tadamichi Morisaka, Vincent Janik
Marine Mammal Science 2014 vol. 30 pp. 512-527
The east coast of Scotland bottlenose dolphin population Monica Arso Civil, Barbara Cheney, Valentina Islas Villanueva, Vincent Janik, Paul Thompson, Philip Steven Hammond
The role of signature whistle matching in bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatu Heidi Harley, Vincent Janik
Animal Behaviour 2014 vol. 96 pp. 79-86
Acoustic deterrent devices to prevent pinniped depredation Thomas Goetz, Vincent Janik
Marine Ecology Progress Series 2013 vol. 492 pp. 285-302
Bottlenose dolphins can use learned vocal labels to address each other Vincent Janik
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2013 vol. 110 pp. 13216-13221
Clicking in Shallow Rivers Frants Jensen, Alice Rocco, Rubaiyat Mansur, Brian Smith, Vincent Janik, Peter Madsen
PLoS One 2013 vol. 8
Cognitive skills in bottlenose dolphin communication Vincent Janik
Trends in Cognitive Sciences 2013 vol. 17 pp. 157-159
Communication in bottlenose dolphins: 50 years of signature whistle research Vincent Janik, Laela Sayigh
Journal of Comparative Physiology A: Neuroethology, Sensory, Neural, and Behavioral Physiology 2013 vol. 199 pp. 479-489
Effects of noise on acoustic signal production in marine mammals Peter Lloyd Tyack, Vincent Janik
2013 pp. 251-271
Identifying Signature Whistles from Recordings of Groups of Unrestrained Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) Vincent Janik, Laela S. Sayigh, Randall S. Wells
Marine Mammal Science 2013 vol. 29 pp. 109-122
Integrating multiple data sources to assess the distribution and abundance of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Scottish waters. Barbara Cheney, Paul M Thompson, Simon N Ingram, Philip Steven Hammond, Peter T Stevick, John W Durban, Ross M Culloch, Simon H Elwen, Laura Mandleberg, Vincent Janik, Valentina Islas Villanueva, Kevin P Robinson, S M Eisfeld, A Walters, C Phillips, Caroline R Weir, Peter G H Evans, Pia Anderwald, Robert J Reid, James B Reid, Ben Wilson
Mammal Review 2013 vol. 43 pp. 71-88
The encoding of individual identity in dolphin signature whistles Arik Kershenbaum, Laela Sayigh, Vincent Janik
PLoS One 2013 vol. 8
Vocal copying of individually distinctive signature whistles in bottlenose dolphins Laela Sayigh, Randall Wells, Wendi Fellner, Vincent Janik
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 2013 vol. 280
Acoustic ecology and behavior of minke whales in the Hawaiian and Marianas islands: localization, abundance estimation, and characterization of minke whale "boings" Tom Norris, Steve Martin, Len Thomas, T. Yack, Julie Oswald, E. M. Nosal, Vincent Janik
Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology 2012 vol. 730 pp. 149-153
Bottlenose dolphins exchange signature whistles when meeting at sea Vincent Janik
Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B: Biological Sciences 2012 vol. 279 pp. 2539-2545
Whistle vocalizations of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) inhabiting the south-west Indian Ocean Per Berggren, Victor Cockcroft, Vincent Janik
Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 2012 vol. 132 pp. 4032-4040
Vocal behaviour and feeding ecology of killer whales Orcinus orca around Shetland, UK Volker Bernt Deecke, Milaja Nykänen, A Foote, Vincent Janik
Aquatic Biology 2011 vol. 13 pp. 79-88
Aversiveness of sounds in phocid seals Thomas Goetz, Vincent Janik
Journal of Experimental Biology 2010 vol. 213 pp. 1536-1548
Signature whistles LS Sayigh, Vincent Janik


The Secretary
Scottish Oceans Institute
Institiud Chuantan na h-Alba
Gatty Marine Laboratory
East Sands St Andrews
KY16 8LB

tel: +44 (0) 1334 463472
fax: +44 (0) 1334 463443