After a 40-ton whale was found dead in the waters off Cape Cod, a team of scientists from Boston University raced to study the fresh carcass of Vector, a female humpback they’d been tracking since 1984. Among the organs extracted were its ears, needed to understand how and what the leviathans hear.
What do the scientists hope to achieve? Whales use their sensitive hearing to navigate, so understanding their aural mechanics could enable scientists to send sound alerts to warn humpbacks of nearby danger — like sometimes fatal naval submarine detection sonar.
Read OZY’s look at killer whales ranging into the Arctic.