Tag Archives: animals

dolphin

ARE DOLPHINS REALLY SMART? THE MAMMAL BEHIND THE MYTH

The concept of the intelligence of mammals and especially dolphins has intrigued the human mind for decades now. We are familiar with how dolphins showed intelligence but upcoming research has revealed how little we really know about these fascinating creatures. They are more like us than we might have suspected.

In most cases, as with animals and birds,  nurture goes along with nature, such that each generation learns the vital skills necessary for survival – such as predatory ability, danger awareness, migratory routes and others – from their predecessor and or elders.  For animals such as insects, the skills for survival are hard wired into their generic composition, kicking in when they are needed. And in case of human beings, rather than just passing on generic skills, each individual is able to educate others based on their own experience. We are not alone in this type of individual learning as research and observation has revealed in the recent years.

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DOLPHIN’S EVOLUTION OVER TIME

Dolphins have ancestral connections to terrestrial mammals and it is believed that the ancestors of dolphins that we know today entered the water about 50 million years ago! Having been terrestrial animals originally, several changes had to take place as outlined below for survival in aquatic environment. Dolphins’ earliest ancestors were land-based hoofed creatures that became aquatic, losing their hind legs and gaining flippers over time.

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