Dolphin Mysteries: Unlocking the Secrets of Communication

Dolphin Mysteries: Unlocking the Secrets of Communication

Kathleen M. Dudzinski, Toni Frohoff

Language: English

Pages: 246

ISBN: B019NR1KN6

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


"Dolphins have fascinated humans for millennia, giving rise to an abundance of stories and myths about them, yet the actual details of their lives in the sea have remained elusive. In this enthralling book, Kathleen M. Dudzinski and Toni Frohoff take us into the dolphins' aquatic world to witness firsthand how they live their lives, communicate, and interact with one another and with other species, including people.

Kathleen M. Dudzinski and Toni Frohoff are scientists who have collectively dedicated more than 40 years to studying dolphins beneath the ocean's surface, frequently through a close-up underwater lens. Drawing on their own experiences and on up-to-the-minute research, the authors show that dolphins are decidedly not just members of a group but distinct individuals, able to communicate with one another and with humans. Dudzinski and Frohoff introduce a new way of looking at, and listening to, the vocabulary of dolphins in the sea, and they even provide an introductory "dolphin dictionary," listing complex social signals that dolphins use to share information among themselves and with people. Unveiling an intimate and scientifically accurate portrait of dolphins, this book will appeal to everyone who has wanted a closer glimpse into the hearts and minds of these amazing creatures."

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proposed by Vincent Janik and Peter Slater, which suggests that individually distinct whistles are likely used to maintain group cohesion or contact among individuals separated by distance.52 That is, dolphins out of sight of friends or group members use a specific whistle (defined by us with a spectrographic contour pattern) to remind their buddies that they are nearby or that they want to regroup. My data then made sense: signatures or individually distinct whistles would be hugely

eavesdropping might be something dolphins actively practice. We know that dolphins can listen to other dolphin echoes. Researchers at The Living Seas, Epcot Center, showed that a bottlenose dolphin trained to listen only to the clicks of an actively echolocating dolphin could discriminate targets.18 This observation provides evidence that dolphins can detect and interpret the echoes of another dolphin’s sonar. But we still do not definitely know if wild dolphins have these abilities. These

morphological characteristics of dolphins and primates, it is interesting that so many aspects of their social behavior are similar.48 For example, dolphins and primates both maintain close social bonds that can last for many years.49 Both live in fusion-fission societies: females often rely on other females as allies, males form long-term coalitions that are significant in reproductive competition, and females often remain in core areas while males tend to disperse and range more widely.50

dolphins do after such an event. Dolphins do not always assist people in danger, and on occasion they may even harm swimmers.82 In 2006, I (Toni) served as a visiting scientist for the National Geographic television series Hunter and the Hunted. The episode was called “Dolphin Attack,” which aptly describes the footage they asked me to submit and describe to viewers. I scrutinized roughly twenty segments of incidents in which various species of dolphin visibly attacked humans. I hesitated at

us. Exactly how we met is hard for us to remember. Our first conversation was probably an excited discussion about dolphin communication, probably punctuated by a mutual dissection of the methodology used or the conclusions reached in some scientific paper we were both reading. In 1990, we were fledgling graduate students at Texas A&M. Under Jane Packard’s expert direction, we participated in lively debates about ethology. Though we hailed from opposite coasts—Kathleen from the east, Toni from

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