The Mourning Practices of Whales
It’s more than just a sinking feeling. New research shows that whales mourn for their loved ones just as humans do. Seven species of the marine giants have been spotted holding onto bodies of dead relatives in touching displays suggesting there’s more to animal emotions than previously thought. Whales aren’t the only animals who mourn their dead: Elephants hold “funerals” and chimps have been known to carry around relatives’ remains for weeks. But whales’ complex emotional lives could affect how we study them — and complicate the ethics of whale captivity.