Dr. Richard Connor shares his more than 30 years of observations on an amazing population of dolphins in Shark Bay, Western Australia, considered the most complex non-human society known. In over 80 'story sections' he reveals the dolphins amazing social lives and "political alliances."
A scientific journey to study the dolphins of coastal Australia considers the many potential sources of dolphin intelligence and what dolphin behavior can inform the scientific community about human intelligence, captive animals and the future of the oceans. 20,000 first printing.
This book concentrates on the marine mammalian group of Odontocetes, the toothed whales, dolphins, and porpoises. In 23 chapters, a total of 40 authors describe general patterns of ethological concepts of odontocetes in their natural environments, with a strong bent towards behavioral ecology. Examples are given of particularly well-studied species and species groups for which enough data exist, especially from the past 15 years. The aim is to give a modern flavor of present knowledge of ethology and behavior of generally large-brained behaviorally flexible mammals that have evolved quite separately from social mammals on land. As well, the plight of populations and species due to humans is described in multiple chapters, with the goal that an understanding of behavior can help to solve or alleviate at least some human-made problems.
A fascinating guide to a career in marine biology written by bestselling journalist Virginia Morell and based on the real-life experiences of an expert in the field—essential reading for someone considering a path to this profession. For the last two decades, Dr. Robin Baird has spent two months out of each year aboard a twenty-four-foot Zodiac boat in the waters off the big island of Hawai'i, researching the twenty-five species of whales and dolphins that live in the Pacific Ocean. His life may seem an impossible dream—but his career path from being the first person in his family to graduate college to becoming the leading expert on some of Hawai'i's marine mammals was full of twists and turns. Join Baird aboard his Zodiac for a candid look at the realities of life as a research scientist, from the ever-present struggles to secure grants and publish new data, to the joys of helping to protect the ocean and its inhabitants. You’ll also learn pro tips, like the unexpected upsides to not majoring in marine biology and the usefulness of hobbies like sailing, birdwatching, photography, and archery. (You’ll need good aim to tag animals with the tiny recording devices that track their movements.) Becoming a Marine Biologist is an essential guide for anyone looking to turn a passion for the natural world into a career. This is the most valuable informational interview you’ll have—required reading for anyone considering this challenging yet rewarding path.
Drawing on their own research as well as scientific literature including evolutionary biology, animal behavior, ecology, anthropology, psychology and neuroscience, two cetacean biologists submerge themselves in the unique environment in which whales and dolphins live. --Publisher's description.
This thorough revision of the classic Encyclopedia of Marine Mammals brings this authoritative book right up-to-date. Articles describe every species in detail, based on the very latest taxonomy, and a host of biological, ecological and sociological aspects relating to marine mammals. The latest information on the biology, ecology, anatomy, behavior and interactions with man is provided by a cast of expert authors – all presented in such detail and clarity to support both marine mammal specialists and the serious naturalist. Fully referenced throughout and with a fresh selection of the best color photographs available, the long-awaited second edition remains at the forefront as the go-to reference on marine mammals. More than 20% NEW MATERIAL includes articles on Climate Change, Pacific White-sided Dolphins, Sociobiology, Habitat Use, Feeding Morphology and more Over 260 articles on the individual species with topics ranging from anatomy and behavior, to conservation, exploitation and the impact of global climate change on marine mammals New color illustrations show every species and document topical articles FROM THE FIRST EDITION “This book is so good...a bargain, full of riches...packed with fascinating up to date information. I recommend it unreservedly it to individuals, students, and researchers, as well as libraries." --Richard M. Laws, MARINE MAMMALS SCIENCE "...establishes a solid and satisfying foundation for current study and future exploration" --Ronald J. Shusterman, SCIENCE
To Touch a Wild Dolphin is the first intimate account of dolphin life in the wild. In 1982 Rachel Smolker traveled to Monkey Mia, a remote beach on the west coast of Australia where wild dolphins regularly interact with humans. Over the next fifteen years, Smolker and a team of fellow scientists were able to explore the lives of dolphins as they had never been explored before: up close, in their natural environment, with a definite recognition of individual dolphin identities. Smolker came to know the relationships, histories, and "personalities" of the dolphins. In To Touch a Wild Dolphin she offers delightful portraits of dolphins she became close to, ranging from the playful and incredibly silly to the slightly crazy, moody, and unpredictable. This develops into an examination of dolphin society and the diversity of characters that inhabit it. And ultimately from the intriguing, sometimes violent differences between the sexes to the nature of mother-infant relationships, to the wide repertoire of sounds used for social communication Smolker is able to reveal the inner workings of dolphin life with unprecedented clarity. Smolker was initially attracted to dolphins for the reasons that attract so many people to them: an elusive sense of their intelligence and their social and emotional complexity, a sense that despite the fact that we live in such entirely different worlds, dolphins are somehow like us. Now, after years of fascinating, inspiring, sometimes troubling, and occasionally heartbreaking experiences with the dolphins of Monkey Mia, Smolker is able to unravel many of the mysteries surrounding these beloved animals. To Touch a Wild Dolphin is a personal book in many ways, at the level of the dolphins and also at the level of the scientist. It is an important book, one that greatly enhances our understanding of dolphins and of ourselves, and as such it will take its place alongside such classics as Farley Mowat's Never Cry Wolf and Jane Goodall's In the Shadow of Man.
"Part review, part testament to extraordinary dedication, and part call to get involved, Cetacean Societies highlights the achievements of behavioral ecologists inspired by the challenges of cetaceans and committed to the exploration of a new world."—from the preface by Richard Wrangham Long-lived, slow to reproduce, and often hidden beneath the water's surface, whales and dolphins (cetaceans) have remained elusive subjects for scientific study even though they have fascinated humans for centuries. Until recently, much of what we knew about cetaceans came from commercial sources such as whalers and trainers for dolphin acts. Innovative research methods and persistent efforts, however, have begun to penetrate the depths to reveal tantalizing glimpses of the lives of these mammals in their natural habitats. Cetacean Societies presents the first comprehensive synthesis and review of these new studies. Groups of chapters focus on the history of cetacean behavioral research and methodology; state-of-the-art reviews of information on four of the most-studied species: bottlenose dolphins, killer whales, sperm whales, and humpback whales; and summaries of major topics, including group living, male and female reproductive strategies, communication, and conservation drawn from comparative research on a wide range of species. Written by some of the world's leading cetacean scientists, this landmark volume will benefit not just students of cetology but also researchers in other areas of behavioral and conservation ecology as well as anyone with a serious interest in the world of whales and dolphins. Contributors are Robin Baird, Phillip Clapham, Jenny Christal, Richard Connor, Janet Mann, Andrew Read, Randall Reeves, Amy Samuels, Peter Tyack, Linda Weilgart, Hal Whitehead, Randall S. Wells, and Richard Wrangham.