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The language of sperm whales: Dialects and accents abound

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Sperm whales have dialects and accents, according to a study published in the journal Animal Behaviour.

Sperm whales have dialects and accents, according to a study published in the journal Animal Behaviour.

The study, via Science Daily, is the result of the Dominica Sperm Whale Project, which aims to track and compare whale calls over time.

As explained in Science Daily, whales have clicks and patterns known as codas. These codas enable whales to tell what members of a community are speaking. There are also accents and dialects. For instance, Caribbean and Pacific whales have different dialects.

The findings were published by Dalhousie Ph.D. student Shane Gero, University of St. Andrews PhD student Ricardo Antunes, Tyler Schulz, Mr. Gero, Dal professor Dr. Hal Whitehead, and St. Andrews faculty members Dr. Jonathan Gordon and Dr. Luke Rendell. These co

The aim of the Dominica Sperm Whale Project is to learn more about the whale community, which is under a threat from pollution and human ocean activities.

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Larry Dignan

Editor-in-Chief

Editor-in-Chief Larry Dignan is editor-in-chief of SmartPlanet and ZDNet. He is also editorial director of TechRepublic. Previously, he was an editor at eWeek, Baseline and CNET News. He has written for WallStreetWeek.com, Inter@ctive Week, New York Times and Financial Planning. He holds degrees from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and the University of Delaware. He is based in New York but resides in Pennsylvania. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure