NEWS for DIVERS from around the WORLD
Beluga whale talks like a humanNational Marine Mammal Foundation in San Diego on Monday published details the about the case of the white Beluga whale named Noc who began to mimic the human voice.
"The whale's vocalizations often sounded as if two people were conversing in the distance," says Dr. Sam Ridgway, President of the National Marine Mammal Foundation in San Diego.
Noc was heard "talking" several times before the scientists were able to identify that the sound was actually coming from him. One diver actually thought it was someone giving him underwater directions and telling him to "get out," reports NBC San Diego.
Scientists began recording Noc's vocalization for the next four years. You can hear him "talking" by clicking on the video. The scientists theorized that because Noc heard human speech, he began spontaneously mimicking it.
Noc only talked for about four years before and no longer made the sounds he matured. The study was done back in 1984 and Noc has since passed away.
"While it's been a number of years since we first encountered this spontaneous mimicry, it's our hope that publishing our observations now will lead to further discoveries about marine mammal learning and vocalization," said Ridgway.