My, What Excellent Echolocation You Have!

In keeping with this unintentional, but serendipitous, blog theme of sensory perception in marine creatures (My, What Big Eyes You Have – March 16 and Whale Sense of Smell- Feb 27), I’d like to share news of a recent study from the University of Hawaii. A specially trained false killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens) worked with researchers Dr. Paul Nachtigall and Ph.D. candidate Laura Kloepper to demonstrate the amount of detail these animals discern from signals sent and received via echolocation.  The fact that odontocetes use echolocation for hunting and navigating is old news.  This research adds to body of knowledge regarding the level of accuracy that can be processed from the sound waves received via their semi-hollow, oil filled mandibles . This BBC report, based  on the paper published in the Journal of Experimental Biology explains the experiment, the results and provides a video clip of this beautiful animal in action.

 

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