discussion / Acoustics  / 23 September 2022

Software to aid acoustic sound files visualization/labelling + Software to syncronize video/acoustic sonograms

Hi everybody!

I am currently trying to figure out if there is any open-source software that could improve our citizen science project on bat monitoring in Europe (and potentially worldwide). Our project aims to monitor bat populations across space and time using both citizen science and professional services, but we have some important limitations under the following situations:

- We have quite many acoustic files collected with AudioMoths and automatically pre-classified (with the species embedded in their metadata) that we would like to visualize (with the options of playback, taking some measurements such as peak freq. etc...) and correct the metadata if needed. We know that Kaleidoscope from Wildlife Acoustics does this job, but we were wondering if there is any user-friendly and open-source software that makes the same.

- In parallel we also have video-recordings of emerging bats from a cave + acoustic recordings of the same animals; collected with an IR camera and an AudioMoth simultaneously. We were wondering if there is any platform, software or solution to play/visualize them simultaneously (we need to visualise the video and the sonogram at the same speed in 2 different windows to confirm the emerging species).

If there is no solution, who would you recommend contacting to establish a collaboration to design them?

Thanks a lot in advance!


I only really know about the audio side of things, not sure about incorporating video too. 

Raven may be something to look into? From the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. There's a bunch of different license purchase options that are pretty affordable (especially compared to other proprietary software like BatSound or Sonobat, though the latter has a free viewer platform).

Arbimon may be something to look into as well, as it is completely free & has a nice online GUI. Though this is more aimed at passive acoustic monitoring-type stuff.  

I would also recommend Arbimon. It is well set up to handle Audiomoth recordings. Being cloud based, you will need a good internet connection for sound file upload. I'm just starting to investigate its use for Song Scope recordings. Setting up the call recognisers will be a slow process, but they can be made available to all users once done.

You could try using a video editor like DaVinci for looking at your video and audio together. I don't think DaVinci displays sonograms by default (just waveform) but I think it will open your selected audio in an external editor which would allow you to see the sonograms and make measurements with something like Audacity or Kaleidoscope.

The open-source program Audacity can show the spectrograms and histograms and has quite a lot of other useful features, e.g. playing ultrasound calls slower, so it can be heard by people.