Functional analyses of whale ears: adaptations for underwater hearing

TitleFunctional analyses of whale ears: adaptations for underwater hearing
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1994
AuthorsKetten, D. R.
JournalI.E.E.E. Underwater Acoustics
Start Page264
Call NumberDRK6789
Keywordsacoustic, anatomy, dolphins, hearing, inner ear, marine mammals, morphology, mysticetes, odontocetes, sound reception, underwtaer hearing, whale ears

The echolocation ability of several dolphin species is well documented, but little is known about hearing characteristics of most marine mammals. This paper describes the major features of the peripheral auditory system in both large and small whales and presents a three-dimensional morphometric analysis of the inner ear in 12 species. Correlation analyses of inner ear morphometry vs. hearing characteristics in terrestrial and aquatic species for which audiograms are available were applied to dolphin and whale data to derive estimates of hearing ranges of larger, non-captive whales.