Re: Whales

From: Pita Admininstrator (
Date: Wed Feb 16 2005 - 16:58:00 EST

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    On Wed, 16 Feb 2005, Marlow, Margaret wrote:

    > Do whlaes have a sense of smell? Do whale's eyes always shed tears?
    Interesting question. Did you ever try to smell something under water?
    Whales have the same problem. Whales and Sharks have olfactory cells but
    they are more for taste than smell. Some dolphons have a feathering of
    the tongue to increase surface area for tasting/smelling. You know from
    having a cold how closely related our senses of smell and taste are. Some
    researchers have discussed the presence of cells in the blowholes that
    might be smell receptors for when the whales are at the surface, but that
    is still in discussion. Remember that there are over 80 species of whales
    and what is true for one is NOT necessarily true for all.

    Whales eyes do always shed tears, as far as we know, because of the
    effects of living in a salt water environment.


                          J. Michael Williamson
    Principal Investigator-WhaleNet <>
                       Associate Professor-Science
      Wheelock College, 200 The Riverway, Boston, MA 02215
                 voice: 617.734.5200, ext. 2256
                fax:    617.734.8666, or 978.468.0073

    "Mother, Mother Ocean, I have heard your call, Wanted to sail upon your waters, since I was three feet tall" Jimmy Buffett ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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