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Dolphins Adjust Their Whistles to Compensate for Background Noise

Is dolphin communication influenced by surrounding noise, of human and natural origin? A new scientific study led by Elena Papale (University of Torino) says ‘yes’! The authors have studied the sounds of short-beaked common dolphins, Atlantic spotted dolphins and striped dolphins around the Canary Islands.

«Results show that dolphins increase the whistles’ frequency parameters with lower variability in the presence of anthropogenic noise, and increase the end frequency of their whistles when confronted with increasing natural noise.»

This shows that an increase in ocean noise levels could interfere with acoustic communication of marine mammals.

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Date of original article: April 6, 2016
Author: Thorsten Lisker
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