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  #1  
Old 05-14-2009, 06:43 PM
The Devil's Grandmother The Devil's Grandmother is offline
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Can sharks vocalize?

Can sharks make any intentional noises? I'm guessing not, since they don't have lungs.

I don't care about what kind of shark it is, and a link to a recording (if such a thing exists would be a real bonus.
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  #2  
Old 05-14-2009, 07:03 PM
Morbo Morbo is offline
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Here ya go.
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  #3  
Old 05-14-2009, 07:12 PM
Sharky Sharky is offline
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I can.

I sound like Elmer Fudd on helium.
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Old 05-14-2009, 09:18 PM
The Devil's Grandmother The Devil's Grandmother is offline
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Thanks Morbo, but I was hoping for something more like a nature documentary.
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  #5  
Old 05-14-2009, 09:43 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is offline
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'Candygram...'




Seriously though, I've seen a lot of nature documentaries but have never heard mention of a shark making a noise. I've just found a list of shark facts on Wiki that says 'Although sharks can hear sound, they rarely make a noise.' 'Rarely'?

I think that sharks do not make noises, except incidentally. But I'll stand to be corrected.
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  #6  
Old 05-14-2009, 10:08 PM
jayjay jayjay is offline
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Fish make all kinds of noises...
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  #7  
Old 05-14-2009, 10:20 PM
Blake Blake is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jayjay View Post
But you'll notice they are all bony fish, not sharks.

The Devil's Grandmother suggested that sharks couldn't make noise because they don't have lungs, and it's probably correct. It's not the actual lung, but the organ that the lung evolved from: the swim bladder. Boney fish, with few exceptions, make noise by using the swim bladder as the resonating chambers. Sharks don't have swim bladders, so it's kind of hard to see how they could generate any usable amount of sound. There are some boney fish that make sounds by rubbing their fins or jaws, but they're rare and I've never heard of any sharks that do it.
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  #8  
Old 05-14-2009, 11:38 PM
Thudlow Boink Thudlow Boink is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Devil's Grandmother View Post
Thanks Morbo, but I was hoping for something more like a nature documentary.
You mean like this?
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  #9  
Old 05-15-2009, 12:08 PM
The Devil's Grandmother The Devil's Grandmother is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
...I've just found a list of shark facts on Wiki that says 'Although sharks can hear sound, they rarely make a noise.' 'Rarely'?
"Rarely" might involve intentionally making noise by slapping the water, but possibly not any sort vocalization. I searched around some more last night, and didn't find anything.
Thanks for the Fish Acoustics link, jayjay, it was very interesting. Thanks also Johnny :candygram!: snerk and Blake.
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  #10  
Old 05-15-2009, 01:23 PM
mlees mlees is offline
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OT: I did some fishing in the beaver ponds of New England as a kid. When extracting the hook from a Bullhead ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bullhead_catfish ), they would make a throaty grunt at me.

Would this be considered "vocalisation"? (I don't know if intent to communicate is what defines vocalisation.)
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  #11  
Old 05-15-2009, 02:25 PM
The Devil's Grandmother The Devil's Grandmother is offline
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Good point, mlees. I guess I was asking two questions 1) do sharks have voices (like whales or dolphins), and 2) do sharks use sound to communicate (like people or tapping insects or birds)?
I think the answers are no and no.

I think the ability to create sound is separate from the ability to use that sound for communication. Your fish were vocalizing, but not communicating.
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  #12  
Old 05-17-2009, 07:25 PM
Blake Blake is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Devil's Grandmother View Post
I think the ability to create sound is separate from the ability to use that sound for communication. Your fish were vocalizing, but not communicating.
The fish were communicating without any shadow of a doubt. Large numbers of fish communicate vocally. You don't evolve elaborate means of producing sound if you aren't using it to communicate.
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  #13  
Old 05-18-2009, 01:49 AM
Nametag Nametag is offline
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Echolocation? Sonar?
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  #14  
Old 05-19-2009, 11:04 PM
BrassyPhrase BrassyPhrase is offline
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IANA
Icthyologist, but I am a big fan of sharks. I find them interesting.

I've never heard on documentaries or in anything I've read that they make noises or echolocate.

They are very sensitive to pressure and may feel it/hear it on their body. I've never read about that topic.

I've caught bony fish myself that croaked and made noises out of the water (years ago).
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  #15  
Old 05-19-2009, 11:28 PM
Colibri Colibri is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mlees View Post
Would this be considered "vocalisation"? (I don't know if intent to communicate is what defines vocalisation.)
For land vertebrates, "vocalization" generally implies a sound made with the voice, that is, by expelling air through the mouth, rather than mechanical sounds made by other body parts (e.g. beaver tail slapping, gorilla chest thumping, wing whirring by birds). I suppose one could extend that to sounds made by fish using vibrations of the swim bladder, even though no air is expelled.

As has been mentioned, many bony fish make sounds, and some are even named for the sounds they make (grunts, croakers). Since sharks lack swim bladders, any sounds would most likely be limited to mechanical ones.
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  #16  
Old 05-20-2009, 12:32 AM
Blake Blake is offline
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Originally Posted by Nametag View Post
Echolocation? Sonar?
Those are the same thing (well tehcnically one is a subset of the other).

And you can't evolve echolocation ex nihilo. You need to be have an elaborate means of producing sound and elaborate means of recieving sound already in place before you can evolve echolocation.

And you don't evolve elaborate means of producing sound if you aren't using it to communicate. Even if the only purpose is to convey a threat to a predator, that's still commnication, albeit intraspecies.

I can't see any posible reason to develop sophisticated sound producing systems except to communicate your intentions or position ot other organisms.
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  #17  
Old 05-20-2009, 09:16 AM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Blake said:
Quote:
And you can't evolve echolocation ex nihilo. You need to be have an elaborate means of producing sound and elaborate means of recieving sound already in place before you can evolve echolocation.

And you don't evolve elaborate means of producing sound if you aren't using it to communicate. Even if the only purpose is to convey a threat to a predator, that's still commnication, albeit intraspecies.
What about bats?

Why can't the sound procuding and receiving units evolve in tandem with the echolocation?
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  #18  
Old 05-20-2009, 01:56 PM
The Second Stone The Second Stone is online now
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But fish can fart, right?
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  #19  
Old 05-20-2009, 02:54 PM
YogSosoth YogSosoth is offline
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Sharks are scary enough without being able to growl right before they eat you.
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  #20  
Old 05-20-2009, 03:19 PM
palindromemordnilap palindromemordnilap is offline
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Video evidence of shark vocalization

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YpodrmKacIk
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  #21  
Old 05-20-2009, 05:36 PM
Colibri Colibri is offline
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Originally Posted by The Second Stone View Post
But fish can fart, right?
The Master speaks.

I helped Cecil research the question.
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  #22  
Old 05-20-2009, 05:36 PM
jayjay jayjay is offline
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Originally Posted by Colibri View Post
The Master speaks.

I helped Cecil research the question.
And here I thought you only did feathers...
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  #23  
Old 05-20-2009, 06:25 PM
Blake Blake is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishman View Post
Blake said:


What about bats?
What about them? Bats evolved bats that could vocalise, and they in turn evolved form insectivores that could vocalise, and they in turn evolved form reotile-like ancetsors that coudl voclaise, and they evolved form amphibians that could vocalise.

I'm assuming you aren't claiming that bats infact evolved their ability to vocalise independently of all thier non-echolocating ancestors?

Quote:
Why can't the sound procuding and receiving units evolve in tandem with the echolocation?
That's like saying that a caveman is going to invent the screwdriver in tandem with the wheel and the internal combustion engine in order to build a motorcar.


Evolution acts by seclection of pre-existing triats. It can't produce fully functional traits out of nothing specualtively, much less three related traits.

Let me put it this way, does your proposed organism develop a voice first with absolutely no ability to interpret or hear the sound produced? If so then how does that provide a survival advantage? Or does it produce the necessary interpretation centres in the brain first, with absolutely no ability to hear or even produce the sounds that it might interpret with it? If so how does that provide a survival advantage? Or does it produce the recieveng apparats first, with no ability to produce or interpet the sound sthat unit might receive?

Theres no conceiveable way that it could happen. The organism needs to have a pre-existing sound production and recieving system in place for selection to work on tor produce an echoloctaion system. You don't evolve the ability to produce echolocation noises when you have no ability to interpret those noises. What you can do is have the ability to make noises to communicate and the gradually modify it from that use into an echolocation system.

Complicated systems like the eye and echoloction systems can be poduced by evolution, but they can't be produced ex nihilo. They can only be produced by a gradual series of modifications from pre-existing structures with other functions. If the component structures have no function in their earlier form the entire system can not be produced.

If the ability to produce sound is not useful before the echolocation system is produced then the echolocation system itself can not be produced. This is the same as the way that the ability to percieve light had to be useful before the eye evolved, in order for the eye to evolve. Organisms didn't evolve eyes in tandem with an abiity to detect light. They evolved eyes because they could detect light. Similarly you don't evolve the ebility to produce sound in tandem with the ability to see with it. You evolve the ability to see with it because you can produce it. If you can't produce it you can never evolve the abiity to see with it.
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  #24  
Old 05-21-2009, 02:13 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Quote:
Similarly you don't evolve the ebility to produce sound in tandem with the ability to see with it. You evolve the ability to see with it because you can produce it. If you can't produce it you can never evolve the abiity to see with it.
Well, we can see light even though our bodies don't produce it. But I see what you are saying.
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  #25  
Old 05-21-2009, 06:32 PM
Blake Blake is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishman View Post
Well, we can see light even though our bodies don't produce it.
Umm, light isn't sound. It's quite diferent. Light is elctromagnetic radiation. Sound is a physical virbation transmiited thorugh the air.

Quote:
But I see what you are saying.
Good... I think.
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  #26  
Old 06-11-2009, 04:07 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Why is it different? Eyes see by the light in the environment. There is sound in the environment independent of any ability to cry/scream/hoot/etc. Why can't the ability to see by sound evolve to match the way seeing by sight evolved?
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  #27  
Old 06-11-2009, 06:11 PM
Blake Blake is offline
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Originally Posted by Irishman View Post
Why is it different? Eyes see by the light in the environment. There is sound in the environment independent of any ability to cry/scream/hoot/etc. Why can't the ability to see by sound evolve to match the way seeing by sight evolved?
Zombie thread.


And the answer is because "seeing" sound is what we call hearing. It's not something different.

You can't posit that an organism could evolve the ability to hear because the ability to see sound is useful. That's a tautology. It's like positing that an organism could evolve the ability to see light because vision is useful. It might be true, but it doesn't tell us anything.
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