Scientists have long known that dolphins’ whistling calls include
repeated information thought to be their names, but a new study
indicates dolphins recognize these names even when voice cues are
removed from the sound.
For example, a dolphin might be expected to recognize its name if
called by its mother, but the new study found most dolphins recognized
names — their signature whistles — even when emitted without
inflection or other vocal cues.
More than that, two dolphins may refer to a third by the third
animal’s name, said Laela Sayigh, one of three authors of a paper
published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.