Most creatures make sounds, even the ones we thought might be silent.
That includes the stingray, and now scientists have recorded the sounds stingrays make.
The scientists took high quality recordings while diving near Australia and Indonesia, and from the sounds of those recordings, the rays make a clicking noise… somehow.
Stingrays don’t have vocal cords, though they do have holes on their heads for moving water across their gills, and those seem to move at the same time the clicks happen.
The sounds are definitely in the range of frequencies scientists know the rays can hear, so they’re a form of communication.
But what are they trying to communicate? And to who?
The researchers aren’t sure, but they have some theories, mostly around protecting themselves from predators.
The clicks, see, are also in the known hearing frequency range for the types of sharks that hunt these rays.
It’s possible that the clicks are warning sounds; come too close to me, they may be saying, and you’ll get stung.
They might also be warnings to other rays to steer clear of the sharks.
The scientists also noticed that after one ray started clicking, a bunch of other rays showed up, as if he’d called for backup!
They’re going to keep studying the clicks to see what they’re all about, though it might be easier if a stingray who loves good podcasts just sends us a few clicks through the website.
Today in 2018, the BBC reported on Jessie the parrot in London.
The bird had been hanging out on the roof for a few days, so its human called for help.
Firefighters had been told that Jessie responded best to hearing the words “I love you,” so that’s what they said.
Jessie repeated the phrase… but as one rescuer put it, “we then discovered that she had a bit of a foul mouth and kept swearing.”
Fortunately, the profane parrot did eventually return home.