Possibly the coolest headline of the day


Be careful, because they may one day tell us "So Long, and thanks for all the fish."

(UPI) -- Bottlenose dolphins that have herded mullet for fishermen in southeastern Brazil for more than a century are now helping scientists unlock the deeper mystery behind the collaboration between animals and humans -- with a new study suggesting the ocean mammals may actually be training their terrestrial counterparts.

The results of the analysis, conducted by Mauricio Cantor, a behavioral ecologist at Oregon State University, Corvallis, were published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The research was based on 5,000 fishing excursions and 177 interviews with anglers in the small coastal city of Laguna -- where the gentle sea creatures are believed to have first teamed up with fishermen about 140 years ago.
At the same time, scientists also noticed that dolphins were observing the fishermen as they eagerly cast their nets out into the murky waters. The coordinated effort seemed to be timed up perfectly and often led to a bonanza for both man and beast.

"The dolphins are almost like teachers," Cantor noted.

What humans don't know is practically infinite.

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Lily O Lady's picture

That includes understanding how little we know.

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"The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

holds that humans began their march toward civilization with the development of agriculture, as troupes of hunter-gatherers established permanent residence and began to maintain a food surplus -- grain. This attracted rodents who would eat the grain under the noses of our ancestors. in turn, the rodents attracted the attention of dogs and cats who soon became symbiotic allies of the settled humans by terrorizing the rats and mice. Over an unknown span of time, humans "domesticated" the dogs, who still relate to humans from a position of subservience. The cats watched this occur and were much impressed. So they domesticated us.

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I cried when I wrote this song. Sue me if I play too long.