Do dolphins have accents? New publication from DMAD!

Ever wondered if dolphins have accents? Well so did we!

Understanding animal behaviour can be key when it comes to trying to conserve animals. If we can understand the context in which an animal is producing a vocalisation then we can better understand if they are feeding, socialising and even if they might be stressed by the presence of humans.

Despite our rapid advances in being able to record the vocalisations of underwater animals, studies are generally confined to particular areas and prior to DMAD setting up Montenegro Dolphin Research there had been no published acoustic data on bottlenose dolphins at all. In recent years, DMAD have been focusing particularly on Boka Kotorska bay in the north of the country where dolphins are regularly sighted. We wanted to publish the information that we collected but also compare it to other data and so we partnered up with an organisation collecting data in Italy.

We looked at the whistle characteristics of bottlenose dolphin whistles in Montenegro for the first time and compared them to these Italian recordings to assess differences. We found similar characteristics for 6 different whistle types between Boka Kotorska, Montenegro and Taranto Bay, Italy despite them being separated by the Adriatic Sea. Due to the small sample size we need far more data before we can draw any meaningful scientific conclusions, however this work represents an important start, particularly for Montenegro where this is the first peer-reviewed acoustic information published.

You can read the full open-access article here:…

DMAD are really grateful to everyone involved in this incredibly fruitful international collaboration!