HUMPBACK WHALES COMMUNICATION AND SONGS
SONG RECORDED BY
Whale Watchers Vallarta
This songs are produced by the male humpbacks with long, complex patterns of sounds that they repeat for extended periods. Are songs because they have a rhyme and a theme.
Both male and female humpback whales produce a wide array of sounds, including the highest and lowest frequencies humans can hear.
While little or no singing takes place during the summer, vocalizations associated with group feeding have been recorded.
How whales and dolphins produce their sounds?
It is unknown since cetaceans do not have functional vocal cords. Some evidence suggests that various valves and muscles in a series of blind sacs, which branch off within the respiratory tract, produce these sounds.
Every population of humpbacks has its own song
An analysis of songs collected from Mexico, Hawaii and Japan within the same season indicates virtually all North Pacific humpbacks constitute one population.
A song generally last between 5 and 45 minutes, depending on the number of phrases it contains. A male may repeat his song many times with a minute of pause.
Songs changes by the time
When the whales return to the breeding ground the following winter, they sing the version popular at the end of the previous breeding season.
As the season progresses, small changes occur in the song. New sounds may be introduced or old ones may be altered.
The purpouse of humpback´s songs
The song may serve to attract females, to maintain the distance between singers, to sort out the dominance hierarchy of males or even to coordinate cooperative behavior of males. Many theories exist about the songs, but the true purpose of the male humpback whales’ song is still unknown.