Wolves use 21 types of howling `dialects'
A STUDY on howling by canid species has found that wolves have distinctive howling repertoires that function like dialects. A research team from the US, Britain, Spain and India ran more than 2,000 different recorded howls from 13 canid species through a software algorithm that boiled them down to 21 howl types. The scientists say their findings could aid in conservation. For example, the vocal dialects used by the critically endangered red wolf and the coyote overlapped significantly. Lead author Arik Kershenbaum says the howling overlap could be a reason why both were so likely to mate with each other. He said scientists could take advantage of the subtle differences in howling to keep the populations apart. The study has been published in BehaviouralProcesses.