We Call Him Flipper. But What Do The Dolphins Call Him?
Dolphins are like humans in many ways: They’re part of complex social networks and, just as in people, a dolphin’s brain is big, relative to the size of its body. But there’s something else, too — a study published Monday shows these acrobats of the sea use name-like whistles to identify and communicate with each other.
“In the underwater environment, animals use their own signature whistles to broadcast their identity and say, ‘I’m here, I’m here,’ ” says Stephanie King, a marine biologist at University of St. Andrews and author of the study.
In the first few months of its life, every bottle-nosed dolphin develops its own unique whistle.