Fin Whale Unsure Whether It Wubs Dubstep Remix of Its Conversation | Smart News | Smithsonian
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Fin Whale Unsure Whether It Wubs Dubstep Remix of Its Conversation

Fin whale calls can be detected by seismic networks, and because this is the internet, there is obviously a remix

smithsonian.com

This fin whale is more of a trance kind of guy. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Fin whales are massive, and massively endangered. Stretching 75 to 85 feet long, these whales can hit up to 80 tons. Though they cruise the oceans all over the world, their low numbers and the depth at which they swim make them hard to track and count. Fortunately for oceanographers, fin whales are a chatty bunch, emitting “loud, highly consistent calls are relatively easy to identify.” Fin whale calls can be picked up on specialized marine microphones, but as researchers recently found out, their conversations can also be heard on seismic monitoring networks—sensors set up to watch for earthquakes and underwater volcanic eruptions.

Sped up a bit, the seismic detections of fin whale calls create a noise that’s not so different from a sound you’d hear pumping from a synthesizer in some electronic music. Seventeen-year-old Detroit-er Ahmad Muhammad must have thought the same thing, because he put together a dubstep compilation harnessing the natural rhythm of the fin whales.

h/t Kim Martini

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About Colin Schultz
Colin Schultz

Colin Schultz is a freelance science writer and editor based in Toronto, Canada. He blogs for Smart News and contributes to the American Geophysical Union. He has a B.Sc. in physical science and philosophy, and a M.A. in journalism.

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