Dolphins and killer whales with vocal registers similar to those of Kim Kardashian and Katy Perry? As absurd as it may seem, a new study published in the prestigious journal Science would seem to confirm this hypothesis. What is it about?
After recently ascertaining that dolphins also have episodic memory, a team of researchers from the University of Southern Denmark and Aarhus University observed a group of dolphins trained together with other free-roaming toothed whales. Experts have therefore discovered that similar to us humans, these animals too have at least three vocal registers: the rhythmic one also called “vocal fry” which produces the lowest tones, the so-called chest voice generally used by us to speak, and finally the falsetto which produces decidedly higher frequencies.
Dr. Elemans at the head of the study, with regard to the rhythmic register, specified that: “It is often used in American English, Kim Kardashian, Kate Perry and Scarlett Johannson are well known for using this registerFurthermore, according to what emerges from the results, the odontocetes would use a similar register in order to produce the sounds necessary to identify the preys through echolocation, becoming in all respects a hunting method.
Some time ago it was also hypothesized that all this happened thanks to the larynx, to then dispel this hypothesis since it would literally be impossible due to the high depths in which animals live, which would therefore prevent an adequate respiratory volume in the lungs. Instead, the nose would play an essential role in this peculiar technique.
During echolocation, odontocetes pressurize the air in the nose and pass it through specific structures called “phonic lips“, That they vibrate just like our vocal cords. It is their repeated acceleration that produces sound waves that travel through the skull to the front of the head. Apparently, considering that now even orcas follow fashion, we might not be surprised by anything.