Reflection: Animal Play Behavior
In Response to Dolphin Mysteries by Toni Frohoff and Kathleen M. Dudzinski
By Danielle Terhune (05/13/10 11:37:43)
Related animals: Dolphin, Whale

"We need to communicate our findings about dolphins to instill better manners in humans when interacting around dolphins. This includes learning how to avoid communication." (149). I had no idea that dolphins in the wild were so interactive with humans. I just assumed shows like Flipper was another one of Hollywood's exaggerations. But as research shows, dating all the way back to ancient times dolphins and humans have always interacted with each other, and usually on a positive level. The negative level is the communication with these amazing creatures. I like how Toni emphasized this point, because I'm not sure if I would have thought of it. This quarter I have learned to look at animals as individuals outside of their species. It has turned my viewing of animals upside down. People have different personalities, so it only makes sense that dolphins, who are so similar to us would have individual personalities. I like how Toni emphasizes this point with the examples of the dolphins and whales becoming a part of the community that they resided near by hanging our more with people then the dolphins. This in turn made people of the community more aware of their ocean environments and care about the local ocean life. The idea of dolphins as ambassadors is a wonderful thing, and I believe that whether we have chosen to observe this or not, it has definitely been that way throughout history.

Two Questions

In the book it is mentioned that "Relatively few people (compared tot he total human population) will have the opportunity to visit dolphins in the wild; therefore, captive dolphins, when well cared for in an enriched environment, can act as ambassadors for their wild counterparts."

Question 1. So does this mean that dolphins can enjoy and live a rich life in captivity, especially when they're put on display for strangers everyday?

Question 2. Given the fact that "lone" whales and dolphins exist and prefer the company of people over their own kind, do you think that these dolphins would be prime candidates for ambassadors in captivity?

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