Sioux Falls Zoologists

"Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent!"

The mirror test is an experiment developed in 1970 by psychologist Gordon Gallup Jr. to determine whether an animal possesses the ability to recognize itself in a mirror. It is the primary indicator of self-awareness in non-human animals and marks entrance to the mirror stage by human children in developmental psychology. Animals that pass the mirror test are: Humans older than 18 mo, Chimpanzees, Bonobos, Orangutans, Gorillas, Bottlenose Dolphins, Orcas (Killer Whales), Elephants, and European Magpies. Others showing signs of self-awareness are Pigs, some Gibbons, Rhesus Macaques, Capuchin Monkeys, some Corvids (Crows & Ravens) and Pigeons w/training. (Sorry Kitty!)

Sioux Falls Zoologists endorse Dolphin Intelligence: It's Time For A
Conversation
for describing the latest discoveries and work being
done in understanding dolphin behavior and communications,
with an eye towards future human-dolphin communications.

Dolphin Intelligence
It's Time For A Conversation
Breaking the communication barrier
between dolphins and humans
By Joshua Foer in National Geographic

Dolphin Intelligence: It's Time For A Conversation (2015) - 26 pages
Dolphin Intelligence: It's Time For A Conversation
Breaking the communication barrier between dolphins and humans

Thinking Like A Dolphin
Understanding one of the smartest creatures on earth

Either one dolphin is mimicking the other, or when they whistle to each other below the surface, they're literally discussing a plan.

They're a kind of alien intelligence sharing our planet - watching them may be the closest we'll ever come to encountering ET.

Dolphins use distinct "signature whistles"to identify one another. No other animal, beside humans, is believed to have specific labels for individuals. (Webmaster's comment: May be an unwarranted conclusion. Many mammals and birds communicate using high frequency sounds beyond our ability to hear them. That makes it exceedingly difficult for us to correlate their behavior with the sounds they are making.)

Dolphins: A Mind of Their Own
Since the ancestors of dolphins left their fellow mammals behind and entered the water more than 50 million years ago, humans and dolphins have evolved radically different bodies adapted to wholly separate environments. But we share one notable piece of anatomy - a large complicated brain. Among the challenges to our own big brains: penetrating the mystery of how dolphins use theirs.

Cerebral Matters
Both humans and dolphins have invested a lot in evolving a big brain, though sometimes to different ends. Dolphins don't process high-level information in enlarged frontal lobes as we do, but they're adapt at solving problems and can apparently plan for the future.

Seeing With Sound
Dolphins have evolved a sensory system to detect objects underwater using the echoes created by sounds. Sounds travel four times as fast in the water as in the air.

Dolphin Behaviors
Using tools, Teaming up, Strand feeding, Remembering each other.

Relative to body size, the brains of Bottlenose dolphins are the largest in the animal kingdom. Scientists are attempting to decode dolphins' complex vocalizations.

Dolphins communicate with their bodies as well as with sounds. A Dusky dolphin catapulting through the air may be sending a signal to other dolphins. The food here is good. Come and get it.

Intensely social dolphins work together on ingenious feeding strategies. Dusky dolphins herd anchovies into neat spheres and then take turns gulping.

Dolphins are extraordinary problem solvers. Two Bottlenose dolphins quickly learn that the only way to pull the cap off a PVC pipe filled with fish is to cooperate.

Bottlenose dolphins have invented a unique way of capturing mullet fish, by encircling them with curtains of whipped-up mud. When the fish leap over the mud rings to escape, they land in the waiting mouths of other dolphins.

Orcas, the largest dolphin, thrust themselves onto the beach to grab sea lion pups. This risky behavior - Orcas occasionally become stranded - is passed down from mothers to calves and is found in just a few locations.

Some Spinner dolphins can spend a morning adorning themselves with leaves. Play is an important part of the social lives of dolphins and is believed to be crucial to their cognitive development.

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Dolphin Intelligence:
It's Time For A Conversation
Breaking the communication barrier
between dolphins and humans
By Joshua Foer in National Geographic

Sioux Falls Zoologists endorse Dolphin Intelligence: It's Time For A
Conversation
for describing the latest discoveries and work being
done in understanding dolphin behavior and communications,
with an eye towards future human-dolphin communications.