Roger Payne, Scientist Who Discovered Whales Can Sing, Dies At 88

(AP) – Roger Payne, the scientist who spurred a worldwide environmental conservation movement with his discovery that whales could sing, has died.

He was 88.

Payne made the discovery in 1967 during a research trip to Bermuda in which a Navy engineer provided him with a recording of curious underwater sounds documented while listening for Russian submarines.

Payne identified the haunting tones as songs whales sing to one another.

He saw the discovery of whale song as a chance to spur interest in saving the giant animals, who were disappearing from the planet.

He would produce the hit album “Songs of the Humpback Whale” in 1970.

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