Dolphin Intelligence continues to amaze. Here are some more amazing facts about these creatures.
Since the 1960s, and especially after the American television show “Flipper” and many live performances featuring dolphins, humans have come to realize that dolphins are intelligent creatures. But just how intelligent are these sea mammals?
Well, studies now tell us that the brain of a dolphin can be compared to the human brain. And, it may even equal it, according to a study conducted by Laurie Marino of Emory University of Atlanta.
Compared to the several thousands of other animals on Earth, dolphins rank at almost the top spot regarding intelligence.
Read on to learn more about some remarkable findings regarding dolphin intelligence.
10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Dolphin Intelligence
1) Dolphins rank second place when compared with other species that have a higher encephalization ratio (EQ). This is a measure of brain-to-body mass. In fact, dolphins have the highest brain-to-body weight of all cetaceans.
Among reptiles, monitor lizards, tegus and some tortoise species have the highest EQ, while parrots, crows, magpies, jays and ravens have the highest among birds.
2) When compared to the size of the brain, the dolphin brain is less in its mass than the human brain. However, the dolphin’s brain is more complex and occupies more space. This property may compensate for the smaller mass.
3) Some experts believe that the social intelligence of dolphins is even higher than that of the great apes while others disagree. This argument comes up because these cetaceans show great empathy and tenderness towards their kind. There are cases where a pod will disrupt their normal routine to help an injured or immobilized member.
A cognitive psychologist at the New York City University, Diana Reiss, says that the learning ability of dolphins is comparable to that of a 3-year-old human child.
4) They are one of the few animals that are believed to process information from their surroundings similar to the way humans do. In other words, they can solve problems like humans.
5) Dolphins can pass information, tips and tricks down from one generation to the other. This trait is mostly common among female dolphins. They can even use tools for activities like hunting. For instance, using sponges to protect their snout while they shuffle through sand at the ocean floor hunting for prey.
6) Their learning ability is excellent. Because of this trait, dolphins feature prominently in many water park shows and other human ventures. Especially the killer whale or orca (Orcinus Orca) and the common bottlenose dolphin. Although this issue remains a highly controversial subject.
7) Dolphins are intelligent enough to identify and spot large fishing boats and follow them to eat some of their catch.
8) They are one of the very few animals on the planet that can recognize themselves in a mirror. They also show particular interest and curiosity in moving images such as that seen in Televisions.
9) Dolphins experience emotional suffering and their physical movements reflect this Their suffering may be severe and persist for a long time.They have positive/negative emotions, and a sense of self and are able to control their behavior.
10) Dolphins can understand and solve complex problems. Also, they can imitate exactly the actions of humans.
Obviously, we still have a lot to learn regarding dolphin intelligence as these creatures are still coming up with new behaviors that surprise scientists all the time. But what we know so far is enough to conclude that these are extremely intelligent beings.
Their feelings and mental abilities appear similar to those of humans. Therefore, we should learn to treat them with respect rather than keeping them captive in artificial chlorinated water prisons for our own pleasure.