[MARMAM] New publication on morphology, acoustics and evolution of cetaceans

Pavel Gol'din pavelgoldin412 at gmail.com
Fri Jul 25 14:14:10 PDT 2014

Dear colleagues,

I am pleased to announce the recent publication published online by
the Biological
Journal of the Linnean Society:

Gol'din, P. (2014), ‘Antlers inside’: are the skull structures of beaked
whales (Cetacea: Ziphiidae) used for echoic imaging and visual display?.
Biological Journal of the Linnean Society. doi: 10.1111/bij.12337


Skulls of many living and extinct beaked whales (Ziphiidae) contain various
bizarre bone and tooth structures. Many of them show sexual dimorphism in
their skull anatomy: males have bizarre skull structures, whereas females
do not. Opinions differ as to what the function of these structures might
be. Some believe that these are weapons; others, that they are sound
transmitters. This article argues that these structures are the means of
visual display. Many of the bizarre bone structures of beaked whales are
not exposed like ‘visuals’ of terrestrial tetrapods, but are located deep
in soft tissues. Nevertheless, toothed whales recognize objects (including
three-dimensional bodies), using echolocation. So, along with visual means,
they can ‘see’ and ‘show’ their internal bone structures with echoic
imaging and use them as informational sources in social interactions and in
individual or species recognition.

Please contact me for comments and questions at: pavelgoldin412 at gmail.com


Pavel Gol'din
Schmalhausen Institute of Zoology
Kiev, Ukraine
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