The Web of Life (11-2) Shared Syntax | Mangrove Snapper


The facility for dialogue rests upon a shared syntax: the patterning by which communication elements are understood. The physical and mental structures used for conspecific communication are innate. For example, humans are born with the basic syntactical knowledge upon which all their languages are based.

 Mangrove Snapper

The mangrove snapper is a fish native to the western Atlantic Ocean. Throughout their lives, snapper use calls to keep their schools together.

Snapper life begins in open water. Sperm and eggs are broadcast in proximity. The fish are born adrift. Centimeter-long larvae are neither helpless nor witless. They growl and produce percussive knocks that let others know of their presence. This helps them traverse the ocean at night together.