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Sperm whales may team up to herd prey

Data recorders yield first hints of coordinated feeding behavior

By
12:54pm, February 23, 2010

PORTLAND — Sperm whales sometimes collaborate when they forage the depths, new tracking data suggest, with some individuals herding prey into dense schools while others lunge into the fray and feed.

Scientists have long known that sperm whales, like many other toothed whales, form long-lasting social groups that typically consist of females and their young. While some researchers have suggested that the females in such groups collaboratively raise their young, the new data are the first to hint that the whales may engage in tag-team hunting. Bruce Ma

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