Dolphin Communication and Cognition

Past, Present, and Future

Dolphin researchers have collected an impressive amount of data over the last twenty years, thanks to advances in technology for monitoring, recording, and analyzing dolphin behavior as well as increasing interest in exploring and modeling dolphins’ cognitive capacities. This volume offers a comprehensive reference to the latest research on dolphin communication and cognition, reporting on findings from both the laboratory and the field. The contributors review a wide range of topics, including vocalization, abstract reasoning abilities, imitation and learning, social cognition, echolocation, and ethical issues in working with cetaceans.

The book begins by examining the dolphin brain and its evolution, the anatomy of its unique sound production and reception systems, and its sensory abilities. It next treats communication, reviewing the complexity of dolphins’ vocalization, and then describes research on cognition, from both experimental and developmental perspectives. Finally, the book considers the future of dolphin research, including a series of provocative questions that remain unanswered, posed by the volume’s expert contributors.

Mats Amundin, Whitlow Au, Ted W. Cranford, Nicola Erdsack, John Ford, Wolf Hanke, Louis M. Herman, Denise L. Herzing, Christine M. Johnson, Petr Krysl, Stan Kuczaj, Marc Lammers, Lori Marino, Paul Nachtigall, Julie Oswald, Adam A. Pack, Heidi Pearson, Sam Ridgway, Jeanette Thomas, Randall Wells, Thomas I. White, Hal Whitehead, Kelley Winship, Bernd Würsig

Table of Contents

  1. Preface
  2. 1. The Brain: Evolution, Structure, and Function

    Lori Marino

  3. 2. Sound Production and Sound Reception in Delphinoids

    Ted W. Cranford, Mats Amundin, and Petr Krysl

  4. 3. Ecology and Evolution of Dolphin Sensory Systems

    Wolf Hanke and Nicola Erdsack

  5. 4. Dolphin Societies: Structure and Function

    Bernd Würsig and Heidi C. Pearson

  6. 5. Analyzing the Acoustic Communication of Dolphins

    Marc O. Lammers and Julie N. Oswald

  7. 6. Making Sense of It All: Multimodal Dolphin Communication

    Denise L. Herzing

  8. 7. Experimental Studies of Dolphin Cognitive Abilities

    Adam A. Pack

  9. 8. How Do Dolphin Calves Make Sense of Their World?

    Stan A. Kuczaj II and Kelley A. Winship

  10. 9. The Cognitive Ecology of Dolphin Social Engagement

    Christine M. Johnson

  11. 10. Whales, Dolphins, and Ethics: A Primer

    Thomas I. White

  12. 11. Visions of the Future

    Whitlow Au, John Ford, Louis M. Herman, Paul Nachtigall, Sam Ridgway, Jeanette Thomas, Randall Wells, Hal Whitehead, Christine M. Johnson, and Denise L. Herzing

  13. Contributors
  14. Index