Whales Drink Sounds: Hearing may use an ancient path | Science News

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Whales Drink Sounds: Hearing may use an ancient path

12:42pm, February 6, 2008

Whales may receive sounds through the throat in addition to taking them in through the jaw, a new study finds. Understanding where sound enters the head of the Cuvier's beaked whale could point to the original acoustic pathway for all whales and provide insight into how sonar affects the animals.

The Cuvier's beaked whale is one of roughly 80 species of toothed whales, along with pilot whales, dolphins, orcas, sperm whales and others. Toothed whales are deep divers that hunt for food using echolocation—they emit sounds that bounce off objects and return to the whale, giving a "picture" of the prey's shape, size, and where

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