Do Animals Talk to Each Other?
Many animals do talk to each other, but not with words the way people do. Animals communicate with each other by using movements, smells, color and sounds. Dogs bark, howl, growl and whine. They bare their teeth or wag their tails. Other dogs understand what these sounds and actions mean.
A bird sings to warn other birds to keep away from its nest. Fireflies use their lights to find other fireflies. Ants recognize strangers and nest mates by their odor. When nest mates meet, they usually stop to share drops of food or to touch antennae.
Animal communication is the transfer of information from one or a group of animals (sender or senders) to one or more other animals (receiver or receivers) which affects either the current or future behavior of the receivers. The transfer of information may be deliberate (e.g. a courtship display) or it may be unintentional (e.g. a prey animal detecting the scent of a predator). When animal communication involves multiple receivers, this may be referred to as an “audience”.
The study of animal communication is a rapidly growing area of study and plays an important part in the disciplines of animal behavior, sociobiology, neurobiology and animal cognition. Even in the 21st century, many prior understandings related to diverse fields such as personal symbolic name use, animal emotions, learning and animal sexual behavior, long thought to be well understood, have been revolutionized.