Fun Facts
Dolphin Melons
More Anatomy: Mouth, Melon, Blowhole, Fins, Belly, Fluke, Inside or Calves

Look at you looking at me, looking at you


A dolphin's forehead is referred to as their melon.
Dolphins use their melon to produce "sound" waves. 
When these waves echo back from an object, the dolphin can tell many things about the object.   
This process is called Echolocation.

Echolocation
This is a skeleton view of a dolphin's head,
sending out sound waves from it's melon,
and sensing the echo through it's lower jaw bone.

 

Dolphins use echolocation to do many things.      They can:

  • Determine how far away something is.

  • Determine how big it is.

  • Determine shape.

  • Determine speed.

  • Determine direction.

  • Sense what material it's made of.

  • They can even use echolocation to "see" through some materials!
    (It is believed that dolphins can sometimes tell if a woman is pregnant!)

  • Identify each other.

  • A strong burst from their melon can be used to temporarily stun other fish long enough so they can eat them!

  • Dolphins have been observed working in groups, using strong bursts to "herd" schools of fish.
    Then they take turns swimming into the middle for a well earned supper!

Dolphins see well enough, but their sense of hearing really helps them in the dark ocean.
Dolphins can use their echolocation on objects 2 inches (5 cm) or smaller, up to 650 feet (200 meters) away.


Dolphins use sounds to communicate

Currently there is no evidence that dolphins have a language like us, but they definitely communicate.
They tell each other about the location of food and dangerous animals,
and they have a great sense of humor (like Emily).
Emily dolphin head.
The dolphin’s echo-system or SONAR, may be able to see inside other animals.
So, the dolphin could tell if a shark’s stomach was empty and let the other dolphins know
"hungry shark nearby - danger!"
Or a Sea World dolphin could tell if his trainer was upset if her heart was beating really fast.
Dolphins can perceive many things that people can’t.
They may not have a true language, but they definitely communicate.

 

What do dolphins use to locate food?  

 

Fun Fact for today:


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ERROR: Random File Unopenable

The random file, as specified in the $random_file perl variable was unopenable.

The file was not found on your file system. This means that it has either not been created or the path you have specified in $trrandom_file is incorrect.


(Check back tomorrow for another dolphin fun fact!)


ERROR: Random File Unopenable

ERROR: Random File Unopenable

The random file, as specified in the $random_file perl variable was unopenable.

The file was not found on your file system. This means that it has either not been created or the path you have specified in $trrandom_file is incorrect.


More Dolphin Anatomy: Mouth, Melon, Blowhole, Fins, Belly, Fluke, Inside or Calves

More 3D Animated Dolphins

Rainbow Dolphin home page

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