Whale Culture, Underwater Observatory and Fish Fights

Written by on April 28, 2013 in Marine Life

Daily Summary

Research shows that lobtail feeding is passed on through social learning.

Research shows that lobtail feeding is passed on through social learning. Photo credit: ilovegreenland via photopin cc.

Do Whales Have Culture? Humpbacks Pass on Behavior

New research shows that humpback whales pass on certain behaviors. This is exciting news because the data shows that the whales actually learn a particular kind of feeding behavior socially, rather than having a genetic predisposition to the behavior. Some suggest that these observations could be false, saying that it’s possible the whales just picked up this behavior without actually learning it, but others say there is very strong evidence for social learning.

Fish win fights on strength of personality

Scientists recently found that when fighting over food, aggressive fish, rather than larger, stronger fish, will win. The research team is wondering if being aggressive would also contribute to reproductive success and if personality traits like aggression are heritable.

Sea Surface Temperatures Reach Highest Level in 150 Years on Northeast Continental Shelf

According to NOAA’s latest Ecosystem Advisory, sea surface temperatures in the Northeast Shelf Large Marine Ecosystem in 2012 were the highest recorded in 150 years. The Northeast Continental Shelf extends from Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, to the Gulf of Maine. The Advisory also notes that the temperature is affecting distributions of fish and shellfish in the area, showing that many key fishery species are slowly moving northeast, up the shelf.

The Northeast Continental Shelf.

The Northeast Continental Shelf. Photo credit: NOAA.

World’s largest underwater observatory will enable real-time interactive ocean study

A new system of cables and sensors is being set up in the northeast Pacific Ocean that will allow scientists to monitor the ocean and gather data in real-time. The Regional Cabled Observatory initiative will become the world’s largest underwater observatory and will start collecting data sometime this summer.

Copyright © 2013 by Marine Science Today, a publication of Marine Science Today LLC.

About the Author

About the Author: Emily Tripp is the Publisher and Editor of MarineScienceToday.com. She holds marine science and biology degrees from the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science and a Master of Advanced Studies degree in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. When she's not writing about marine science, she's probably running around outside or playing with her dog. .

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