Posted: 14.06.2024 17:27:00

Study: elephants can call each other by name

Scientists have analysed the sounds made by 100 elephants using their vocal cords in Amboseli National Park and Samburu National Reserve in Kenya and found out that in this way these mammals can call each other by name, Reuters reports


Over the years, researchers studying elephants have noticed the phenomenon that when an elephant speaks with one sound to a group of other mammals, all of them respond. However, sometimes, by making other sounds, only a single individual responds. A new study involving wild African savannah elephants in Kenya supports the idea that this is how elephants address each other by name.

“Using a machine-learning model, the researchers identified what appeared to be a name-like component in these calls identifying a specific elephant as the intended addressee. The researchers then played audio for 17 elephants to test how they would respond to a call apparently addressed to them as well as to a call apparently addressed to some other elephant,” the publication reads.

Previous studies have shown that when greeting each other, elephants use a complex system of interaction, including visual, acoustic and tactile gestures.