Humpback whales have a specialised larynx for underwater singing

Humpback whales use songs to communicate with each other across the ocean KARIM ILIYA Biologists have figured out how baleen whales produce their signature songs – and it involves their uniquely shaped larynx. Baleen whales, including humpbacks, communicate with complex songs that can be heard over vast distances. “People recorded the first whale sounds in … Read more

One of The World’s Most Mysterious Whales Shows Signs of Holding Traditions : ScienceAlert

Repeated sightings of an elusive whale in a strange place could indicate a cultural tradition. Scientists have repeatedly seen a group of Baird’s beaked whales (Berardius bairdii) frolicking in shallow waters around the Commander Islands, at the border between the Pacific Ocean and the Bering Sea. The strange part? Baird’s beaked whales, like all beaked … Read more

Surprise Discovery Shows Blue Whales Have Been Mating With Another Species : ScienceAlert

New research suggests interspecies hanky panky between blue and fin whales is more common than we thought, at least in certain parts of the world. Genome sequencing of North Atlantic blue whales (Balaenoptera musculus musculus) revealed around 3.5 percent of the group’s DNA came from a neighboring species, fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus). The scientists from … Read more

Can ‘Conversations’ with Whales Teach Us to Talk with Aliens?

For some scientists who are eager to talk with aliens, the best avenue isn’t any telescope pointed to the heavens but rather a boat slipping through the glassy waters of Alaska’s Frederick Sound. This area is a seasonal hotspot for humpback whales, whose eerie and enchanting submarine songs may serve as proxies for any alien … Read more

Sperm Whales Live in Huge, Distinct Clans Spread Across The Ocean : ScienceAlert

A leading expert on sperm whales has gathered the evidence and shown that the biggest-brained animals on Earth form large and complex clans with unique dialects and behaviors. Using some rough calculations based on sperm whale populations, Hal Whitehead from Dalhousie University in Canada estimates that many of these clans number in the tens of … Read more

Perucetus colossus: An ancient whale claimed the title of heaviest animal ever in 2023

An artist’s impression of Perucetus colossus Alberto Gennari In August, the blue whale was cut down to size. Once known as the heaviest animal to have ever existed, that title has now been claimed by a gargantuan species of ancient whale discovered in Peru. The oversized beast, dubbed Perucetus colossus, has delighted people around the … Read more

19-Million-Year-Old Jaw Bone Flips Our Understanding of How The Biggest Whales Evolved : ScienceAlert

How whales got huge has long fascinated researchers, but a gap in their fossil record has left precious little evidence to settle on a definitive answer. Now a toothless whale fossil has been dated to around 19 million years old – a staggering 16 million years earlier than we realized these animals even existed. The … Read more

Are Orca Whales Friends or Foes?

Carin Leong: Orcas have been all over the news recently. [CLIP: News montage] Leong: Earlier this year the story of orcas ramming into yachts off the Spanish coast kind of took off. [CLIP: News montage] Leong: People on the Internet were calling them allies, hoping that they would sink billionaires and making other jokes about … Read more

Scientists Contact Whales in World-First Communication Experiment : ScienceAlert

What do whale experts and alien hunters have in common? More than you might expect. For a recent study published in the peer-reviewed journal PeerJ, scientists from UC Davis, the Alaska Whale Foundation, and SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) teamed up. Their mission: Communicate with whales. And they did just that. In a landmark experiment, … Read more