Guy Harvey Magazine

FALL 2017

Guy Harvey Magazine is focused on fishing, boating, scuba diving, and marine conservation. Portfolios from the world's best fishing photographers, articles on gear, travel, tournaments, apparel, lifestyle, seafood recipes, sustainable fisheries.

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Page 27 of 83

Can dolphins talk to each other? It's well established that dolphins are smart. In fact, their brains are larger and more complex than human brains. Scientists have recorded their whistles and clicks for years and knew they were using some form of communication, but not until recently have some experts come to believe that dolphins can have conversations much like we do. Researchers at the Karadag Nature Reserve in Feodosia, Ukraine, recorded Yasha and Yana, two Black Sea bottlenose dolphins in captivity, floating next to one another and seeming to have a conversation. Lead researcher Dr Vyacheslav Ryabov said, "Essentially, this exchange resembles a conversation between two people." What is fascinating about the interaction is that the dolphins appeared to be keenly interested in what the other had to say and understood that they had to take turns vocalizing to get their meaning across. So, apparently the have more manners than we do and don't interrupt each other constantly. Scientists know that dolphins use more than 1,000 different types of whistles depending on social context, but it has been unclear if they could communicate directly with each other, one to one. In 2007, Australian scientists identified specific whistles, which were interpreted to mean things like, "I'm here, where is everyone," "Hurry up," and "There's food over here." Sound a little bit like a typical human family's conversation at Thanksgiving? The question remains if or when we will translate their language so that we can communicate directly with dolphins just like we talk to our fellow humans. In Dolphins We Trust Speaking of dolphins, there are many stories of the happy mammals assisting people who were drowning or in distress, but perhaps the most heartwarming tale comes from New Zealand in 2004 where an entire pod of dolphins is credited with saving four swimmers from a great white shark. Lifeguard Rob Howes, his daughter Niccy, 15, Karina Cooper, 15, and Helen Slade, 16, were swimming about 300 feet from shore at Ocean Beach, near Whangarei, when seven bottlenose dolphins sped toward them and herded them together. "They were behaving really weird," Howes said, "turning tight circles on us, and slapping the water with their tails. Then I turned and saw this great big grey fish swim around me." 28 | BY JACK CREVALLE

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