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(Mother Nature Network)   It turns out dolphins mourn their dead. Except in no wake zones   (mnn.com ) divider line
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14702 clicks; posted to Main » on 05 Sep 2011 at 3:54 PM (4 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2011-09-05 02:43:07 PM  
So long and thanks for all the fish?
 
2011-09-05 03:05:11 PM  
Crows do the same thing.
 
2011-09-05 03:23:01 PM  

sporking fooneristic nic: So long and thanks for all the fish?


42
 
2011-09-05 03:54:14 PM  
Or is it possible that dolphins have evolved an instinct to push small (about the size of their young) inert things, or struggling things, up to the water's surface because in the long run it allows more of their direct relatives (i.e. sharing a large part of their DNA) to survive, and there's no reason for higher level thought to particularly be involved?

It just comes to mind because I was reading "The Selfish Gene" recently and there's mention of that as a possibility for why the altruistic behavior of both saving struggling or sick young AND the various reports from struggling humans that were nudged up to the surface and saved by dolphins, could have evolved.

...of course, that says nothing whatsoever about the internal feelings (or lack thereof) from the point of the individual animal doing it, many of the human "maternal instincts" and whatnot probably came around in similar fashion, and we don't deny that humans have emotion.
 
2011-09-05 03:58:35 PM  
Lots of animals mourn their dead.
 
2011-09-05 03:58:42 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: Crows do the same thing.


So do vultures.
"Oh god, Bob is dead!"
"Bob was delicious."
 
2011-09-05 04:00:29 PM  
There have been debates for decades over the intelligence of dolphins. Why should an animal with intelligence lack a certain level of emotion?
 
2011-09-05 04:04:00 PM  
I thought Dolphins were the mean spirited bullies of the Sea?

Or is that Killer Whales?
 
2011-09-05 04:04:31 PM  
www.japanprobe.com
 
2011-09-05 04:10:47 PM  
DON'T PANIC
 
2011-09-05 04:12:03 PM  

skinink: DON'T PANIC


You forgot to use friendly letters.

/Panic attack
 
2011-09-05 04:15:54 PM  
holdyourfireal.smugmug.com
 
2011-09-05 04:27:09 PM  
Dolphins are assholes. And rapists.
 
2011-09-05 04:30:17 PM  
Fine, whatever. Just don't start this crap for cows and pigs. I don't eat chimps, dolphins, or elephants - but don't even think about farking with my bacon cheeseburger.
 
2011-09-05 04:31:04 PM  

LordJiro: Dolphins are assholes. And rapists.


Asshole rapists. In both senses of the phrase.
 
2011-09-05 04:35:40 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: Crows do the same thing.


My mom likes to tell the story of how, when I came home from the hospital as a baby, a flock of crows was gathered on the lawn screaming over a dead one. Apparently it was unbearably depressing.

/it was probably an omen
 
2011-09-05 04:36:13 PM  
www.venturefans.org
yes, but are they hot?
 
2011-09-05 04:36:59 PM  
bayjournal.com.au
 
2011-09-05 04:38:32 PM  
I read an interesting theory about the possibility of dolphins and whales being able to communicate with a sonic version of pictograms. In other words to catch fish a dolphin emits clicks and whistles and listens for any sound echo off the fish. What if a dolphin turned to his friend and emitted what sounded like the echo of a fish where there wasn't one. Wouldn't it in effect be "saying" to the other dolphin fish? And if it had that ability then why not sound out big fish, many fish, or shark?

Early man told stories by recalling and recreating images of things they had seen and done on cave walls. What if dolphins can recall and recreate sounds of things they've heard and done?

No proof of this as far as I know but their brains are as large as ours and large portion of it is dedicated to processing sound.

//CTB (cool theory bro)
 
2011-09-05 04:42:43 PM  
No love for the headline yet? Only reason I clicked on the thread. Nice job, subby.
 
2011-09-05 04:43:26 PM  
So dogs don't mourn? I call BS.

The story of Hachiko (new window)
 
2011-09-05 04:43:45 PM  

RidgeRacerZX6: I read an interesting theory about the possibility of dolphins and whales being able to communicate with a sonic version of pictograms. In other words to catch fish a dolphin emits clicks and whistles and listens for any sound echo off the fish. What if a dolphin turned to his friend and emitted what sounded like the echo of a fish where there wasn't one. Wouldn't it in effect be "saying" to the other dolphin fish? And if it had that ability then why not sound out big fish, many fish, or shark?

Early man told stories by recalling and recreating images of things they had seen and done on cave walls. What if dolphins can recall and recreate sounds of things they've heard and done?

No proof of this as far as I know but their brains are as large as ours and large portion of it is dedicated to processing sound.

//CTB (cool theory bro)


I am positive that I saw on TV once that some bats do this exact thing to tell their colony where they've found food, but I can't find it on Google.
 
2011-09-05 04:46:14 PM  
I found the part about elephants and elephant bones to be far more intriguing.
 
B A [TotalFark]
2011-09-05 04:57:23 PM  
AS illustrated in the article, and a picture above, many animals grieve death. My youngest Main Coon cat grieved at the death of my oldest cat. Months later she would still go to the kitchen, lay with her nose at the spot her companion died, & make pitiful mewing noises.
 
2011-09-05 04:59:00 PM  
I never understood people who say that animals don't have emotions. I think basic emotions exist in most animals, fear and sadness and pleasure and even love. Yes there are emotions that require our particular sort of brain to apply a name to but I have a feeling that emotion predates thought. The idea that intelligence is required for emotion seems silly on it's face, it's two different topics really, a human of nearly any intelligence level feels emotions, they may just lack the higher capacity to *understand* that emotion or it's source. A kid with down syndrome might not understand death but he can feel loss and sadness or confusion at the lack of a familiar presence.

A gorilla or a dolphin or a parrot or horse or dog or even something more alien like a cuttlefish may lack our particular specialized brain adaptations for things like language but just because you can't name a feeling doesn't mean you don't feel it. People try to be so careful about anthropomorphism that they seem to go too far in the opposite direction. Of course they feel things, that's how our brain works and their brains aren't that dramatically different. People who think that animals are meat robots are putting too much emphasis on the perceived uniqueness of mankind.
 
2011-09-05 05:01:42 PM  
All animals understand death including thier own. Lots of animals grieve at the death of loved ones. The important question is; do they understand that it is inevitable?
 
2011-09-05 05:07:18 PM  

KelvinTheClown: No love for the headline yet? Only reason I clicked on the thread. Nice job, subby.


The joke... it burns....
 
2011-09-05 05:11:06 PM  
I think what we need to be concerned about is if these gorillas, dolphins, dogs or parrots have accepted Jesus Christ as their person savior or not.
 
2011-09-05 05:20:36 PM  

chairborne: I never understood people who say that animals don't have emotions. I think basic emotions exist in most animals, fear and sadness and pleasure and even love.


I am a big believer in animal emotions, but some animals can't feel love. Snakes don't have a neocortex and can't love. I think higher emotions are probably beyond most reptiles (and fish, maybe? I don't know because I think fish are boring as hell).

/not to knock reptiles, because I like them
//but they probably don't like me back
 
2011-09-05 05:24:01 PM  

LordJiro: Dolphins are assholes. And rapists.


The rape will be imminence when the dolphins get the technology to come on land.

img690.imageshack.us
 
2011-09-05 05:29:57 PM  
Once had a momma dolphin driving us crazy at our beachside apartment for three days because she would not stop crying. Her perished baby had washed up on shore and she was apparently noisily grieving.
 
2011-09-05 05:35:43 PM  
Rats will grieve as well. We've had a few that tried to warm up their sibling's body, or groom their fur. Most will sniff them, then mope for a few days.
 
2011-09-05 05:35:48 PM  

Too Pretty For Prison: Fine, whatever. Just don't start this crap for cows and pigs. I don't eat chimps, dolphins, or elephants - but don't even think about farking with my bacon cheeseburger.


You don't eat them, or won't? Big difference there.

Bad news: pigs are just as trainable & capable of affection as dogs. Many cows can be saddled, taught commands, & ridden with relative ease. If you treat animals above a certain level of complexity [usually mammals but some exotic birds too] with affection, they will demonstrate relatively more intelligence than their enslaved livestock peers.

I'm still going to eat bacon cheeseburgers, but really, we are eating relatively close relatives when we eat mammals.

/ but fish & chicken? Zero guilt.
//if a PETA-patrol throws blood on my leather jacket, I'll respond with barbecue sauce.
 
2011-09-05 05:36:39 PM  

KelvinTheClown: No love for the headline yet? Only reason I clicked on the thread. Nice job, subby.


Ditto. That's some funny stuff right there.
 
2011-09-05 05:38:01 PM  

elchip: I found the part about elephants and elephant bones to be far more intriguing.


This too. I suppose elephants that took the sight of dead elephant bones as a "warning, don't go here it's dangerous" would have an advantage over elephants that didn't care, maybe, but if it's really standing and STARING for a while, makes me wonder just what's up with it.

Mjeck: I think what we need to be concerned about is if these gorillas, dolphins, dogs or parrots have accepted Jesus Christ as their person savior or not.


If it means the religious nutbags leave the rest of us humans alone in favor of bothering the animals for a while, well, maybe that's not such a bad thing...

/bothering in the biblical sense?
//baaaa
 
2011-09-05 05:38:49 PM  

cowgirl toffee: LordJiro: Dolphins are assholes. And rapists.

The rape will be imminence when the dolphins get the technology to come on land.

[img690.imageshack.us image 194x259]


that is an amazing costume!
 
2011-09-05 05:39:20 PM  

chairborne: I never understood people who say that animals don't have emotions. I think basic emotions exist in most animals, fear and sadness and pleasure and even love. Yes there are emotions that require our particular sort of brain to apply a name to but I have a feeling that emotion predates thought. The idea that intelligence is required for emotion seems silly on it's face, it's two different topics really, a human of nearly any intelligence level feels emotions, they may just lack the higher capacity to *understand* that emotion or it's source. A kid with down syndrome might not understand death but he can feel loss and sadness or confusion at the lack of a familiar presence.

A gorilla or a dolphin or a parrot or horse or dog or even something more alien like a cuttlefish may lack our particular specialized brain adaptations for things like language but just because you can't name a feeling doesn't mean you don't feel it. People try to be so careful about anthropomorphism that they seem to go too far in the opposite direction. Of course they feel things, that's how our brain works and their brains aren't that dramatically different. People who think that animals are meat robots are putting too much emphasis on the perceived uniqueness of mankind.


This.
And thank you for mentioning cuttlefish, which I think are awesome.
 
2011-09-05 05:42:24 PM  

RatMaster999: Rats will grieve as well. We've had a few that tried to warm up their sibling's body, or groom their fur. Most will sniff them, then mope for a few days.


I think I know why they try to keep the body warm.
NSFW-ish (new window)
 
2011-09-05 05:46:59 PM  
E.S.Q. Once had a momma dolphin driving us crazy at our beachside apartment for three days because she would not stop crying. Her perished baby had washed up on shore and she was apparently noisily grieving.

That's sad. You should have put an end to her grieving by gathering the dead baby dolphin up, taking it out on a boat to where momma was grieving, and chopping it apart before dumping it back into the water with her.
 
2011-09-05 05:47:16 PM  
PunkRockLawyer:
And thank you for mentioning cuttlefish, which I think are awesome tasting.

fixt
 
2011-09-05 05:49:52 PM  
Cats mourn, especially if a close friend or relative dies. I've witnessed this firsthand.
 
2011-09-05 05:58:54 PM  
Is a wake only an Irish thing, or maybe just a Catholic thing, or maybe just a midwestern thing? I've always taken them for granted as a prelude to a funeral, but at one recent wake there was a non-Irish, non-Midwestern, non-Catholic friend of the family who was flummoxed by the idea.
 
2011-09-05 06:01:07 PM  
Animals are self aware sentient beings. Even insects and arthropods show personality differences and survival instincts.

Simply put: every definition of consciousness that put humans in a privileged position has been shattered one at a time. Now, the ignorant are left with some Bible quotes and some half-assed jargon laden bullshiat about how animals don't use hypothetical future situations when they communicate or something equally absurd and ignorant of the history of medical science.

Y'see, initially doctors though animals were nothing but automatons. So they used them in vivisection, ignoring their cries. Of course normal humans have been working in close proximity with animals for thousands of years and knew better than the sheltered city doctors, so they put the kaibosh on that. So doctors thought about it and lo and behold all physiological tests point to animals feeling pain and pleasure. Oops.

But they're still just machines. So they did some studies to test their minds and prove chimps and gorillas are just useful sources of meat that looks human. Turns out, they can learn English and sign language. Double oops.

But no other animals are self aware or can communicate. It's only apes. Then they discovered all kinds of animals pass on knowledge with sound. In fact, crows can carry on information over generations. Triple oops.

But only humans use tool. We're doctors and we need animals to do vivisection. I mean, it's important for science. We can't test things on full humans that use tools. No animals use- almost all animals use tools. The usual suspects of crows, apes, and monkeys of course use more, but turns out a host of others do to. Hell, ants have agriculture. Quadruple oops.

Now we're to the point where it's simply stark denial, much like the islanders in Erik the Viking who keep singing like it's a normal day even as their island sinks below the sea, to not admit that animals are not so different from humans. Any arguments for humans as having privileged consciousness ignore one or both of the following: We can't communicate perfectly with any other species yet, so how can we know how far their communication really goes. or Every reasonable seeming argument for humans' privileged consciousness of the past 1000 years has withered when faced with evidence.

So assuming animals do not have consciousness or less of one is basically a doomed assumption that ignores pretty much everything. Might as well put radium in your undies so you can find them in the dark or use lead dishes to eat off of while you're at it. It would be less ignorant of known facts.
 
OKO
2011-09-05 06:12:10 PM  

dolphkhan: KelvinTheClown: No love for the headline yet? Only reason I clicked on the thread. Nice job, subby.

Ditto. That's some funny stuff right there.


Did subby phrase it that way on porpoise ?
 
2011-09-05 06:15:06 PM  
What weirdly never happens with these "scientists" is consideration of other interpretations. ""This was repeated over and over again, sometimes frantically, during two days of observation," said Gonzalvo. "The mother never separated from her calf.... [She] seemed unable to accept the death.""
How about the animal is doing what animals do--operating on instinct, repeatedly, until it gets the instinctively expected response? How about those animals stopping to view the dead are merely animals "smart" enough to recognize that's different so they're struggling to make sense of it? Not that this is actually what's in the animals' mind, but that no one seem willing to even consider that this is ALL that's in the animals' minds.
 
2011-09-05 06:19:10 PM  
I'm calling shenanigans.

The dolphins' behavior isn't anything that we don't see a lot of other animals do on discovery channel every week. Apparently this genius saw two behaviors (both of which could be explained independently by instinct) and made some generalization that, because dolphins engage in both of these behaviors, they can comprehend death. Not buying it. Maybe it's true but what they've described isn't any good evidence for it.

As for the elephant staring at the elephant bones, maybe it's just standing there is confusion because it smells an elephant but all it can see is bones. Not saying that's it, just saying it's just as plausible.
 
2011-09-05 06:19:22 PM  

PunkRockLawyer: This.
And thank you for mentioning cuttlefish, which I think are awesome.


Nova had a really neat show about cuttlefish (link pops to description page). If you've not seen it, you should check it out.
 
2011-09-05 06:21:06 PM  

doglover: But they're still just machines.


Well, we're just machines too.
 
2011-09-05 06:33:25 PM  

KelvinTheClown: No love for the headline yet? Only reason I clicked on the thread. Nice job, subby.


This. I chortled.
 
2011-09-05 07:00:52 PM  

ObiWanSpicoli: [holdyourfireal.smugmug.com image 634x659]


That instantly brought tears to my eyes.
 
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