Scientists’ Live Whale-Song Network Borrows Plot of Star Trek IV

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Photo: Paramount Pictures

In Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home ("the most acclaimed Star Trek adventure of all time"), James Tiberius Kirk and his cohorts travel back in time to 1986 to find humpback whales, the only creatures whose sound can communicate with an alien probe about to attack Earth. Truth: Humpback whales were like the pandas of the eighties. Now scientists are offering a live feed of ten hydrophones sprinkled around waters in Europe and Canada, with more to come, in order to record and archive long-term sub-sea noise of whales and dolphins. Anyone can listen in. They say it's an attempt to study the effect of human activity on those species. But the signs are clear: An alien probe is imminent.

Tune in to the live whale song network [New Scientist]