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Michael Dwyer / AP

Baby humpback whales and their mothers whisper to each other when swimming through the ocean, according to a new paper published in Functional Ecology.

Why it matters: This is the first such discovery of humpback whales' communication patterns that reveals their ability to whisper to one another. Whispering is one way for the calves and mothers to avoid dangerous situations when they're in vulnerable positions — namely, low-volume communication is a strategic way for them to avoid killer whales looking for an easy meal.

How they did it: The researchers followed eight calves and two mothers for 48 hours each using detachable acoustic tags to record their communication. They captured recordings as the whales swam off the Australian coast.

One fun thing: They also captured what they interpreted as the calvesasking their mothers for more milk when they were hungry, described as sound like "two balloons being rubbed together."

Go deeper

“You blew it”: GOP activist turns on corporations over vaccine mandates

The chairman of the American Conservative Union said on "Axios on HBO" he accepts "Joe Biden is my president, and I want him to succeed," but predicted Republicans retake the House and Senate in 2022 — with greater than 50% odds Donald Trump runs in 2024.

The big picture: In a joint interview with his wife, Mercedes, Matt Schlapp also refused to share their vaccination status. And he told corporate America "you blew it" by embracing vaccine mandates and liberal social stances that have alienated GOP voters and politicians.

15 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Pelosi expects “billionaire’s tax” to pay for Biden social spending

Photo: Yasin Ozturk/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Sunday she expects the chamber to pass the bipartisan infrastructure plan by week’s end, and alternatives to corporate tax hikes and a “billionaires tax” will be used to finance President Biden’s promised expansion to the social safety net.

Why it matters: Pelosi’s comments come as House and Senate leaders try to wrap up a deal. What will get cut — and how the remainder will be paid — are linchpins to a final agreement.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
16 mins ago - Axios on HBO

FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried mystified by value of NFTs

Crypto exchange FTX, valued last week at $25 billion, recently launched an NFT marketplace by selling an image of the word "Test" for $270,000.

  • FTX founder and CEO Sam Bankman-Fried tells "Axios on HBO" that he doesn't quite understand the appeal, but adds that he doesn't personally appreciate many visual arts.

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