One more way in which mankind isn’t the sole proprietor

Some birds have been shown to have a grammar, now it turns out dolphins have names. Amazing and fascinating, speaking volumes about how little we know and how much we take for granted when talking about man’s dominion over the beasts. Douglas Adams was right about a lot more than we know.

news @ nature.com – Dolphins play name game – Underwater whistles give bottlenoses their own moniker.:

We are not the only animals to give ourselves names, says research on bottlenose dolphins. The dolphins’ distinctive whistles may function as individual calling cards, allowing them to recognize each other and even refer to others by name.

The research reveals that bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) each have their own personalized whistle, which is recognized by other dolphins even from a synthetic version played through a speaker. This suggests that the creatures recognize these as names in their own right, rather than identifying individuals based simply on the sound quality of their voice.

Wait till the dolphins start to get marketing calls during dinner. “Mr. eeehwaheeeiii? I have an amazing offer for you….” Man, will those dolphins be pissed.

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Author: Mitch Ratcliffe

Mitch Ratcliffe is a veteran entrepreneur, journalist and business model hacker. He operates this site, which is a collection of the blogs he's published over the years, as well as an archive of his professional publishing record. As always, this is a work in progress. Such is life.