Singers as Sentinels: How Whales Can Warn of Changing Ecosystems

Wednesday, Apr 24, 2024, 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Eduardo Mercado III is a behavioral neuroscientist, cognitive psychologist, and bioacoustician at the University at Buffalo, the State University of New York (UB). His research focuses on understanding how brain plasticity contributes to learning, perception, and mental capacity.

At Radcliffe, Mercado is building on his discoveries about the nature, functions, and plasticity of whale songs. The Singers as Sentinels project combines sophisticated analyses of humpback whales recorded singing near Hawaiʻi and Colombia—geared toward identifying the ways that singers modify their songs in different contexts—with a broader effort to raise public awareness of how human activities are increasingly affecting the lives of whales. 

Mercado’s research has been supported by National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation and featured in Animal Cognition, the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, the Journal of Comparative Psychology, and Psychological Bulletin.


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