why do whales sing

Whale sounds? Why do they make them, and what do they sound like?



In our science lessons, we’ve started learning about whales and dolphins for our Swimming Creatures Science Lessons,  and as I was reading about them it brought up all sorts of questions about their sounds, so I did a quick youtube search and played the different whale sounds.  I thought I’d save ya’ll the search for whale sounds and share the whale sounds videos we listened to.

whale sounds

(there might be affiliate links in here)

Our textbook that led us to studying whale sounds

We’re using Apologia: Swimming Creatures of the Fifth Day, and studying all of these swimming creatures makes me happy. We also used (and reviewed) a Swimming Creatures lapbook. Though with the hindsight of the future Ticia and now knowing my kids general dislike of cutting out lapbook pieces, I’d get the Swimming Creatures notebooks.

Whale Sounds YouTube videos

I actually have a whale sounds playlist to listen to when I need calm and relaxing “music” to help me fall asleep or just quiet because of a headache (future Ticia who is updating this post, currently is typing this with a headache and is strongly considering starting some of these whale sounds YouTube videos to help me out)

I love the sound of humpback whales, and since my second-grade teacher had humpback whales as one of our science units, I’ve loved them ever since. I remember having a field trip where we got to see their baleen teeth, and all the cool stuff.
Anyone else now have the Raffi song Baby Beluga stuck in their head? If so, you’re welcome. My Dad called him the hippie singer, which always amused me.
Dolphins always sound so happy.
No real comment on this, but the Google likes it when you have more text that randomly talks about the topic like Whale Sounds on YouTube. There, Google is happier. Future Ticia also need more caffeine.


I also couldn’t resist a few for the boys of the different whales hunting:


Why do whales make sounds?

whale sounds and why they make them

This is the fascinating part of the lesson. Whales make sounds for a variety of reasons. At first, we thought it was only for guidance and rather like how a bat uses sonar.

Then we discovered there is some form of language in the sounds, they’re using it to communicate over vast distances.

I’d love to find out what they are saying, and maybe someday someone will discover the key to translating whale sounds.


Side quest from the Whale Sounds on YouTube: Whales hunting fish

I mean seriously, isn’t that cool?


I have to admit I could just sit there and listen to whale songs for ages.  And I at least can’t think of humpback whales without thinking of this clip from Star Trek 4:

Yes I am that nerdy


Okay, so it’s a bit of a lazy post, but I figure that’s more interesting to see than my saying we sorted them into baleen and non-baleen whales.  I’ve spent most of this week either sewing, cleaning, or swimming.  Busy, busy, busy.

why do whales sing

Now for some non-whale sound YouTube video posts, but still science related

Just in case you don’t want to hear more about whale sounds, but are interested in more science lessons, here you go:

I’m resharing this because I’d forgotten how much fun it was and how much I loved these whale sound videos, and besides I just spent the weekend dealing with my daughter getting 6 stitches, which makes everything else seem odd. So this was originally published on July 10, 2011.


13 responses to “Whale sounds? Why do they make them, and what do they sound like?”

  1. Phyllis Avatar

    I agree- their calls are music.

  2. Marcia Avatar

    Ticia, I LOVE this post! It can be added to so many science lessons ….. ocean animals, mammals, endangered animals, etc….even great if the kids are writing a poem about whales or dolphins… It will give them inspiration…. I am going to link up to it on my blog later today with my animals unit! If you find frogs or rainforest sounds in the future …let me know. Thanks for sharing!
    Marcia 🙂

  3. Discovering Montessori Avatar
    Discovering Montessori

    MY kids just loved the videos!! Thank you for another science lesson.

  4. musicalmary Avatar

    My daughter has been reading a series of books: The Dolphin Diaries, which she really likes! Thanks again for hosting science Sunday!


  5. Little J did a whale study just before our visit to the Georgia Aquarium. I never thought to listen to their songs. I'll have to let him see your post!
    Little Wonders' Days

  6. An Almost Unschooling Mom Avatar
    An Almost Unschooling Mom

    Fantastic! D is going to LOVE this!!! And, on the way to church this morning, before I read this post, I was telling the Man of the House, how great it is to know someone else who has read Douglas Adams, and is as big a geek about Star Trek as I am – he said he wished you lived closer 🙂 He'll get a kick out of the link.

  7. Christy Avatar

    I used to have a CD of whale sounds and it was great to fall asleep to!

  8. I have to bookmark this post for future reference. Isn't YouTube great help in finding stuff at just the right time?

  9. I love all of these clips. Thanks for sharing. I couldn't help but think of one thing over and over while I was reading this. The part of Finding Nemo where Dori says she speaks whale and just says things deep and drawn out. I am a total dork, but you knew that.

  10. Thanks everyone!

    Musical Mary- I'll look into these books.

    Almost Unschooling- I tried so very hard to limit it to only ONE clip from Star Trek 4. It is a shame we're so far apart.

    Christy- whale sounds would be great to fall asleep to.

    Raising- You Tube is AWESOME!

  11. Fascinating to hear all the different sounds they make. Very cool.

  12. They are definitely musical animals!

    1. They really are, I love listening to them all the time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *