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Humpback whale songs spread eastward like the latest pop tune
Date:4/15/2011

ity of Queensland in collaboration with members of the South Pacific Whale Research Consortium made the discovery by searching for patterns in whale songs recorded from six neighboring populations in the Pacific Ocean over a decade. This revealed a striking pattern of cultural transmission as whale songs spread from Australia to French Polynesia over the course of about two years.

"The songs started in the population that migrates along the eastern coast of Australia and then movedjust the songs, and probably not the whalesall the way to French Polynesia in the east," Garland said. "Songs were first learnt from males in the west and then subsequently learned in a stepwise fashion repeatedly across the vast region."

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