27.1.14

The Loneliest Whale in the World



In 2004, The New York Times wrote an article about the loneliest whale in the world. Scientists have been tracking her since 1992 and they discovered the problem:

She isn’t like any other baleen whale. Unlike all other whales, she doesn’t have friends. She doesn’t have a family. She doesn’t belong to any tribe, pack or gang. She doesn’t have a lover. She never had one. Her songs come in groups of two to six calls, lasting for five to six seconds each. But her voice is unlike any other baleen whale. It is unique—while the rest of her kind communicate between 12 and 25hz, she sings at 52hz. You see, that’s precisely the problem. No other whales can hear her. Every one of her desperate calls to communicate remains unanswered. Each cry ignored. And, with every lonely song, she becomes sadder and more frustrated, her notes going deeper in despair as the years go by.

Just imagine that massive mammal, floating alone and singing—too big to connect with any of the beings it passes, feeling paradoxically small in the vast stretches of empty, open ocean.

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5 comments:

  1. And now...I cry for the lonely whale.

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  2. And not realizing that if she just changed her tone of voice she could be heard!

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  3. I feel so sad for this lonely girl. I hope that she does find another unique whale that sings on her wavelength. It is a pity that with all our supposedly superior intelligence, we cannot solve this problem.

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  4. There has to be a way for science to place a 'voicebox' type thing on her so it changes her voice to be heard by others? How can this not have already happened? I can see Sea World claiming her now in the name of "saving her." I'm certain the only reason they haven't is because Baleen Whale's aren't as aesthetically pleasing to the crowds with money.

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