What Do the Whales Think? Recent Research

An orca, thinking about ...? Photo by Kevin J. Smith on a Maple Leaf trip in Alaska

An orca, thinking about ...? Photo (c) Kevin J. Smith from a Maple Leaf trip in Alaska

Posted by Paul

(reprinted from the winter email newsletter)

This winter, on several cold morning walks from my home to Maple Leaf’s winter berth on Victoria’s Inner Harbor, I’ve enjoyed listening to the CBC Ideas broadcast of “Ocean Mind”.

The two-part radio program, from the stellar “Ideas” series, details the latest research into whale intelligence, including some recent findings about the orcas on BC’s coast.

This program is great food for thought for anyone that’s heard whales vocalizing and wondered what type of communication they have with each other, or how they perceive their surroundings.

Fascinating stuff, and I’m sure it will increase your appreciation for our brainy friends beneath the waves. You can catch the whole show online at www.cbc.ca/ideas or click here to listen.

Bonus material – thanks to the whales:

  • Click here to hear humpback whales recorded at Carpenter Bay on a Haida Gwaii trip on the Maple Leaf
    LARGE FILE! (16 MB)
  • Click here to hear orcas (the northern residents, A12s) recorded in Devastation Channel on a spring Great Bear Rainforest & Kitlope Supervoyage on the Maple Leaf.
  • LARGE FILE! (10 MB)
    – In this recording, you can hear the distinctive 2-note A-clan calls throughout, as well as some echolocation clicks and many other sounds.