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IPFS News Link • Biology, Botany and Zoology

Scientists claim they've had a 20 minute conversation with a WHALE...


It might sound like a scene out of Avatar 2

But scientists claim it's now possible to have a conversation with a whale, following a 20-minute chat with a humpback whale in Southeast Alaska

A 38-year-old whale named Twain 'spoke' with the researchers from the SETI Institute and UC Davis by responding to a pre-recorded 'contact call'. 

This marks the first communication between humans and whales in their own language, according to the team. 

Looking ahead, the researchers say the conversation could pave the way for interactions with aliens in the future.

In the study, researchers from SETI studied how whales communicate in the hopes of developing 'intelligence filters' as part of the search for alien life. 

The scientists broadcast a type of greeting call called a 'whup/throp' through underwater speakers. 

When the call was played through the water, Twain approached the boat and responded with a greeting call of her own.

Importantly, the scientists found that Twain was changing the frequency of her own calls in response to the researchers' broadcast.

According to lead author, Dr Brenda McCowan of UC Davis, this mirroring behaviour shows that the whale was engaging in a type of interactive conversation with the recorded call. 

Dr McCowan said: 'We believe this is the first such communicative exchange between humans and humpback whales in the humpback "language".'

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