Whales in Culture
Whales in Popular Culture
Whales have a very interesting culture for them to take part in. The more we observe it and explore it the more we have learned about them. What is very interesting is that whales in different locations have different types of cultures. This is the same as humans, and that is why these mammals tend to be something that is quite unique when it comes to the world of animals.
The fact that we are just really learning about these whale cultures is due to the fact that we now have the right equipment to benefit from. We can track the movements of the whales, record the sounds the make as they interact with each other, and we can identify what some of those sounds and movements really mean.
When you study a pod of whales you will start to notice some characteristics. For example how they call to each other can be different than in other pods. This concept is often believed to be due to the fact that their calls can be heard for so many miles. They operate on what is referred to as different frequencies just like radios. This way they don’t intercept each other.
Larger groups of whales are referred to as clans or herds. These larger groups often emerge when migration is taking place. You will find plenty of variations among their culture here too. The males will make sounds to attract the females, yet they won’t all be the same even though they mean the same thing. You can think of that as you would humans that speak the same language but have some different types of words that they use to “say” the same things.
Even though whales have their own culture, they are very important to that of the waters. They are among the largest creatures that reside there. They are also the only ones that don’t have any predators to worry about that are other animals. This gives them a freedom to explore in their culture that others don’t. They aren’t limited due to their natural instinct to protect themselves and those that they share a life with.
Since there are so many different types of whales, the division of the culture tends to be even more diverse. However, researchers show that the differences in behavior and sounds have more to do with their pod and where they reside than what type of whale they happen to be.
Even though whales are one side of the issue, there are cultural values where they are using these animals. For example in Japan and Alaska it is very common for whaling to occur. It is culturally acceptable due to the fact that they rely on them for food. They also sale parts of the whale for other uses to make money. For these types of cultures, the whale is a means for them to survive.
Yet that culture as they know it continues to be threatened. This is due to the many groups out there interested in protecting the whales. They are interested in that culture being intact. Yet there doesn’t seem to be a balance for both sides of these cultures to remain as they are. This is where they debates come in as well as illegal acts of killing whales. More needs to be done to try to find the answers that will help both these water creatures and the cultures that have become heavily dependent upon them. Only time will tell how both of them are able to survive; one without the benefits of the whale and one by being left alone.