It has been said that humans have become the dominant species on the planet largely in thanks to our ability to communicate through language.
We are able to give each each directions and pass on knowledge quickly, which means we can learn faster than other animals who need to “do” in order to “know.”
Only a select few species have come close to developing language as complicated as ours, but now it seems that number has grown.
One orca, or killer whale, has been taught how to echo language prompts from its trainer.
This is a scientific breakthrough, as any animal that can demonstrate an understanding of social learning (or learning by copying) must have higher brain functioning than most beings on the planet.
While many birds can mimic human speech patterns, orcas are notable for producing sound not through the larynx in their throats, but via their blowhole.
It’s a little eerie how close it sounds, listen for yourself on the next page!