Cetacean Societies: Field Studies of Dolphins and Whales / Edition 1

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"Part review, part testament to extraordinary dedication, and part call to get involved, Cetacean Societies highlights the achievements of behavioral ecologists inspired by the challenges of cetaceans and committed to the exploration of a new world."—from the preface by Richard Wrangham

Long-lived, slow to reproduce, and often hidden beneath the water's surface, whales and dolphins (cetaceans) have remained elusive subjects for scientific study even though they have fascinated humans for centuries. Until recently, much of what we knew about cetaceans came from commercial sources such as whalers and trainers for dolphin acts. Innovative research methods and persistent efforts, however, have begun to penetrate the depths to reveal tantalizing glimpses of the lives of these mammals in their natural habitats.

Cetacean Societies presents the first comprehensive synthesis and review of these new studies. Groups of chapters focus on the history of cetacean behavioral research and methodology; state-of-the-art reviews of information on four of the most-studied species: bottlenose dolphins, killer whales, sperm whales, and humpback whales; and summaries of major topics, including group living, male and female reproductive strategies, communication, and conservation drawn from comparative research on a wide range of species.

Written by some of the world's leading cetacean scientists, this landmark volume will benefit not just students of cetology but also researchers in other areas of behavioral and conservation ecology as well as anyone with a serious interest in the world of whales and dolphins.

Contributors are Robin Baird, Phillip Clapham, Jenny Christal, Richard Connor, Janet Mann, Andrew Read, Randall Reeves, Amy Samuels, Peter Tyack, Linda Weilgart, Hal Whitehead, Randall S. Wells, and Richard Wrangham.

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Editorial Reviews

Presented as a preliminary bridge from taxon-oriented to question- oriented science on cetacean behavior, this survey presents the results from field studies in methodological, comparative, and theoretical context. A primary concern throughout the work is how to conduct the science when facing extreme difficulties in observational opportunities. After discussions of the history and methods of the science, information about what is known about four particular species is presented<-->bottlenose dolphins, killer whales, sperm whales, and humpback whales. Finally comparative theoretical chapters discuss such topics as group living, reproductive strategies, communication, and conservation. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780226503417
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Publication date: 6/1/2000
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 448
  • Sales rank: 453,044
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Hal Whitehead is a University Research Professor in the Department of Biology at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

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Table of Contents

Foreword - Richard Wrangham
Introduction: The Social Lives of Whales and Dolphins
Richard C. Connor, Janet Mann, Peter L. Tyack, and Hal Whitehead
Part 1 - History and Methods
1. Flukeprints: A History of Studying Cetacean Societies
Amy Samuels and Peter L. Tyack
2. Unraveling the Dynamics of Social Life: Long-term Studies and Observational Methods
Janet Mann
3. Studying Cetacean Social Structure in Space and Time: Innovative Techniques
Hal Whitehead, Jenny Christal, and Peter L. Tyack
Part 2 - Four Species
4. The Bottlenose Dolphin: Social Relationships in a Fission-Fusion Society
Richard C. Connor, Randall S. Wells, Janet Mann, and Andrew J. Read
5. The Killer Whale: Foraging Specilizations and Group Hunting
Robin W. Baird
6. The Sperm Whale: Social Females and Roving Males
Hal Whitehead and Linda Weilgart
7. The Humpback Whale: Seasonal Feeding and Breeding in a Baleen Whale
Phillip J. Clapham
Part 3 - Comparative Studies, Theory, and Conservation
8. Group Living in Whales and Dolphins
Richard C. Connor
9. Female Reproductive Strategies of Cetaceans: Life Histories and Calf Care
Hal Whitehead and Janet Mann
10. Male Reproductive Strategies and Social Bonds
Richard C. Connor, Andrew J. Read, and Richard Wrangham
11. Functional Aspects of Cetacean Communication
Peter L. Tyack
12. Science and the Conservation, Protection, and Management of Wild Cetaceans
Hal Whitehead, Randall R. Reeves, and Peter L. Tyack
Epilogue: The Future of Behavioral Research on Cetaceans in the Wild
Peter L. Tyack, Richard C. Connor, Janet Mann, and Hal Whitehead
Appendix 1: Cetacean Phylogeny and Evolution
Appendix 2: Cetacean Taxonomy
Citation Index
Subject Index

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