|Volume 24 Number 3 March 2022
Dolphins are members of a unique group of animals in whom God has instilled some utterly amazing abilities. They are in a group of animals called toothed whales or odontoceti that have the ability to communicate in ways that defy any explanation other than a Divine Creator instilling that trait in them. Let’s look at just a little of what God has created in these mammals.
Dolphins use their communication abilities for sound production and reception, for navigation in dark and murky waters, and for food location. The variety of clicks, moans, trills, grunts, squeaks and whistles are made without vocal cords. The voice box or larynx of the toothed whales does lack vocal cords but does appear to be able to create some of the sounds. They also have a region called the nasal sacs. This area has special structures called sphincter muscles that help produce sounds. The sounds themselves are probably made when air is moved in the windpipe and the nasal sacs. During some vocalizations, the dolphin releases air from the blow hole, but most scientists believe this is for visual affect and not necessarily connected to making the sound.
The sounds are produced in the frequency range from 0.25 to 150 hertz. It seems that this wide range of pitch is used by dolphins for various jobs. The lowest ranges seemed to be reserved for social communications and most are in the 40 hertz region. The higher frequencies in the 40 to 150 hertz clicks are probably used primarily for something called echolocation. This process allows the toothed whales and other marine mammals to “see” with their “ears” as the clicks are reflected back to structures on their head that allows them the tell what is in front of them.
The forehead of the dolphin has an area called the melon that is filled with lipids (fats). The clicks pass through the melon, and it seems to function as an acoustical lens to focus the sound waves into a narrow beam. This, then, travels out into the water at almost 1 mile per second. The beam bounces off objects ahead of the dolphin and returns as echoes where it is picked up by the fat-filled lower jawbones. This sound is conducted into the middle and inner ear, heard in the auditory center of the brain.
The dolphin appears to recognize by hearing its favorite types of food, and maybe even “sees” a mental image of the food quality of the fish it is considering. This unique set of organs for communicating and “seeing” give these animals unmatched talking ability.
While it seems to most zoologists that there is no language for the dolphins, they can identify each other with unique signature whistles. Mothers whistle almost continuously for several days to their calves after giving birth, to help the calves identify and locate their respective mothers in a very large ocean.
The females in the dolphin species are also impressive in the fact that they can create small, self-organized networks. These networks seem to be able to transfer information about their environment and other communications. They are as complex as any group of animals that God has created and almost as sophisticated as any human or Internet network.
Therefore, let us praise God for the marvelous creations we can see in the world that He made for us. May we love and serve Him all of the days of our lives.
Why Jesus’ Way
The issue of authority is one of the more important foundational topics that is frequently ignored by much of the religious world. However, I am glad to say that it is changing. More and more, people are considering the issue, and so, here are some things to share with others on why we should do things Jesus’ way instead of in our own ways. First, Jesus is Creator (John 1:1-10); as such, naturally, He has the authority to set law and tell us what He expects and desires of us. Second, Jesus is our Redeemer (Galatians 3:13). Since He gave His life for us to free us from sin (Galatians 1:4), we honor Him by doing things His way. Finally, Jesus is our Judge (John 12:48). He declared that there is one path to God, and it is through Him (John 14:6). Therefore, there is no other way but Jesus’ way!