A phonograph record of the underwater calls of delphinapterus leucus
Schevill, William E.
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LocationSaguenay River, Quebec
DelphinaplMus leucas (Pallas), variously called white porpoise, white whale, or beluga, has long been known as a vociferous species. It is an arctic form, generally restricted to waters north of N. Lat. 60°, except along the coast of eastern Asia, where it ranges as far south as the offing of southeastern Sakhalin, and along the coast of eastern North America, where it is normally abundant to about the same latitudes in the St. Lawrence estuary. It was in this region, in the lower Saguenay River, Quebec, that our records were made, in July 1949. In these restricted waters we have been fortunate in finding concentrations of Delphinapterus with no other aquatic sound-makers in evidence. For this and other reasons detailed before (1949, Science, Vol. 109, pp. 143-144, Feb. 11 ), we are convinced that all the sounds heard on this record were made under water by DelphinaplMus. This particular cetacean makes a very good subject, as it is especially conspicuous both optically and acoustically, and is easy to identify at sight--and, we now submit, likewise by ear.
Originally issued as Reference No. 50-1, series later renamed WHOI-
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