Herring in Kolgrafafjörður, West Iceland, were unmoved when researchers attempted to scare them out of the fjord by playing ‘Brown Sugar’ and ‘Satisfaction’ by The Rolling Stones.Archive photo: Páll Stefánsson/Iceland Review.
Up to 50,000 tons of herring died in the fjord late last year and earlier this year. There are concerns that another such incident will occur after fish started filling the fjord again in late November. The fish are believed to have died due to lack of oxygen in the fjord caused by a landfill and bridge constructed across the fjord in December 2004.
Sigmar Guðbjörnsson, who works for the company Star-Oddi, which specializes in collecting data on aquatic environments and animal behavior, told mbl.is that they had played The Rolling Stones more for fun.
The company has been carrying out experiments by playing different sounds in the fjord with the aim of scaring the fish back out to sea. “They were perhaps not as afraid of The Rolling Stones as of other sounds,” Sigmar said, adding that other songs or musicians had not yet been tested.
Various experiments have been conducted including the use of low frequency sounds, explosives and the sound of killer whales, all of which have proved unsuccessful in keeping the herring away.