Re: Whale Communication

From: Cathy Schaeff (
Date: Mon Apr 01 2002 - 19:21:44 EST

Hi Michael,

You have asked some good questions -- and we don't have answers for some of
them, depending upon which species you are considering. Try the links below
for a first pass. You should be able to get some or most of the info -- and
will know where the info is not yet available.


Cathy Schaeff

Sound page, (
Behavior page

----- Original Message -----
From: "mgriggs" <>
To: <>; <>;
Sent: Monday, April 01, 2002 11:22 AM
Subject: Whale Communication

> Dear Dr. Catherine Schaeff,
> Hello, My name is Michael Griggs. I am a student at Emerson Jr. Sr. High
> School in New Jersey. Currently I am participating in the Authentic
> Research Program at our high school that is supervised by our teacher Mr.
> Deochand Deodharrie. This class has won the State Department of Education
> Best Practice Award in New Jersey, for the years of 2000-2001.
> I am emailing you in the hopes of some aid in answering a few questions
> that myself, and my mentor, Dr. McClary at Farleigh Dickinson University,
> have in my topic of Whale Communication. Most specifically I was hoping
> you could answer these particular questions:
> 1. Does a short song have the same meaning, in courtship, as a longer
> 2. Does the number of times a song is repeated have the same meaning as a
> song that was not repeated?
> 3. How does a whale sing its own distinctive song? Does it learn a song
> based on what it hears from other whales and modifies the song to make it
> different or does it make a song that is different from other whales that
it is
> around?
> 4. Can a whale learn a new song or change its song in response to other
> whales around it?
> 5. Which songs are preferred by females in terms of rhythm? Songs with a
> lot of quick notes or songs with few but long held notes?
> 6. Which songs are preferred by females in terms of tone? Songs with high
> tones or tones with low tones?
> Michael Griggs
> Emerson, New Jersey

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