The journal Science covered some aspects of soundscapes in the News Focus section of the 21 February 2014 issue.
Eavesdropping on Ecosystems – Kelly Servick
Advances in cheap, tough automated recorders and powerful sound-analysis software are inspiring scientists to launch increasingly ambitious efforts that use sound to document and analyze ecosystems. A growing community of self-described soundscape ecologists are capturing thousands of hours of sound—from birdsong and insect choruses to rushing water, thunderclaps, and even the drone of cars and airplanes. Converting complex soundscapes into relatively simple numerical indices of biodiversity is proving difficult, and researchers are struggling to turn huge collections of digital recordings into something they can use. But if they’re successful, they’ll have a powerful and noninvasive way to describe ecosystems and measure how they’re changing. (read the full article – paywall)
In addition, the Science podcast also touched on the subject. The podcast is available for free:
Science Podcast – Kelly Servick discusses what can be learned about ecosystems by listening to soundscapes with David Malakoff.