Catalogue of Soundscape Intervention

Umi-Tsukushi: Sea Cat-Tail


The Sea Cat-Tail in Fukushima, Japan, located in the Onahama Port No. 2 was implemented in April 2000 at the request of the Onahama Port Administration and Construction Office. Designed by Taiko Shono.

In the audio example you can hear the sound of inside one of the horns at Umi-Tsukushi: Sea Cat-Tail in Fukushima.

The sound of tidal waves is transmitted from beneath the pier to the promenade above by horn-shaped “sea stethoscopes.” Visitors can estimate the tidal level based on the noises they hear. The Umi-Tsukushi (Sea Cat-tail) is made up of ten of those metal acoustic sculptures of varying heights that augment the sounds of the sea under the promenade [1].

According to the descriptions on site, next to every horn, two light bulbs are installed that light up when it gets dark. In tune with the movement of the waves, the light’s intensity increases or decreases to light up the horn. When a person approaches the horn, a sensor detects the person’s distance to the horn and the light’s intensity is adjusted accordingly, so that the approaching person can enjoy listening to the sounds of the horn.

Panorama view of the horns at Onahama Port
Water view of Umi-Tsukushi Sea Cat-Tail [1]
Acoustic sculptures at Umi-Tsukushi Sea Cat-Tail [1]
Sketch of Umi-Tsukushi Sea Cat-Tail [1]


[1] OFFICE SHONO / Umi-Tsukushi. Retrieved: 5th August 2022, from

Photos, audio: Helen Henze
Entry submitted by: Xiaochao Chen