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  • As a breeze blows through the savannah,

    當微風吹過大草原的時候。

  • a snake-shaped tube stretches into the air and scans the horizon like a periscope.

    蛇形管延伸到空中,像潛望鏡一樣掃描地平線。

  • But it's not seeingit's sniffing for odors

    但它不是在看,而是在聞氣味。

  • like the scent of a watering hole or the musk of a dangerous predator.

    如同水塘的氣味或危險的捕食者的麝香。

  • The trunk's owner is a young African elephant.

    樹幹的主人是一頭年輕的非洲象。

  • At only 8 years old, she still has a lot to learn about her home.

    只有8歲的她,對家鄉的瞭解還有很多。

  • Fortunately, she's not alone.

    幸運的是,她並不孤單。

  • Elephants are extremely social creatures,

    大象是極其社會化的動物。

  • with females living in tight-knit herds led by a single matriarch.

    雌性動物生活在一個由單一母體上司的緊密的群落中。

  • And every member of the group has one of the most versatile tools

    而每個組員都有一個最通用的工具。

  • in the savannah to help them get by.

    在大草原上幫助他們度過難關。

  • Today her herd is looking for water.

    今天她的牛群在找水。

  • Or, more accurately, smelling for water.

    或者更準確的說,是聞水而來。

  • Elephants have more genes devoted to smell than any other creature,

    大象比其他生物擁有更多專門用於嗅覺的基因。

  • making them the best sniffers in the animal kingdom.

    使它們成為動物界最好的嗅探者。

  • Even at our elephant's young age, her trunk is already 1.5 meters long

    即使我們的大象年紀很小 它的鼻子已經有1.5米長了

  • and contains five times as many olfactory receptors as a human nose,

    並且含有的嗅覺受體數量是人類鼻子的五倍。

  • allowing her to smell standing water several kilometers away.

    讓她在幾公里外就能聞到積水的味道。

  • And now, the matriarch uses her own keen sense of smell to plot the herd's course.

    而現在,族長用自己敏銳的嗅覺來規劃牛群的路線。

  • Their journey is long, so our elephant keeps her energy up

    它們的旅程很漫長,所以我們的大象要保持精力充沛

  • by snacking on the occasional patch of thick grass.

    通過在偶爾的一片厚厚的草地上吃零食。

  • But this light lunch isn't just about staying fed

    但這頓清淡的午餐並不只是為了吃飽飯--。

  • she's also looking for clues.

    她也在尋找線索。

  • Like many other mammals,

    像許多其他哺乳動物一樣。

  • vents in the roof of an elephant's mouth lead directly to the vomeronasal organ.

    大象嘴頂的通風口直接通向吐納器官。

  • This structure can detect chemical signals left by other elephants.

    這種結構可以檢測其他大象留下的化學信號。

  • So as the herd forages, they're also gathering information

    所以,當牛群覓食時,它們也在收集資訊。

  • about what other herds have come this way.

    關於其他的群落都是這樣過來的。

  • All the while, the group's adults are on the lookout for signs of other animals,

    同時,群裡的大人們都在尋找其他動物的蹤跡。

  • including potential threats.

    包括潛在的威脅。

  • Fortunately, while lions might attack a young or sickly elephant,

    幸運的是,雖然獅子可能會攻擊一隻年輕或生病的大象。

  • few are foolish enough to take on a healthy adult.

    很少有人會傻到去對付一個健康的成年人。

  • Weighing 3 tons and bearing powerful tusks nearly a meter long,

    重達3噸,生有近一米長的強大獠牙。

  • our elephant's mother is a force to be reckoned with.

    我們的大象媽媽是一股不可忽視的力量。

  • Her dexterous trunk doubles as a powerful, flexible arm.

    她那靈巧的軀幹,就像一隻有力而靈活的手臂。

  • Containing no bones and an estimated 40,000 muscles,

    包含沒有骨頭,估計有4萬塊肌肉。

  • these agile appendages can bend, twist, contract, and expand.

    這些靈活的附肢可以彎曲、扭轉、收縮和擴張。

  • At 8 years old, our elephant's trunk is already strong enough

    我們的大象在8歲的時候,它的鼻子已經足夠強壯了。

  • to move small fallen trees,

    來移動倒伏的小樹。

  • while finger-like extensions allow for delicate maneuvers like wiping her eye.

    而手指狀的延伸部分則可以進行擦拭眼睛等精細的操作。

  • She can even grab a nearby branch,

    她甚至可以抓住附近的樹枝。

  • break it to just the right length, and wave off pesky insects.

    把它折成恰到好處的長度,揮別討厭的昆蟲。

  • Suddenly, the matriarch stops their march and sniffs the air.

    忽然,族長停止了他們的行進,嗅著空氣的味道。

  • Using smell alone, elephants can recognize each member of their herd,

    僅憑嗅覺,大象就能識別出象群中的每個成員。

  • and their exceptional memories can retain the smells of elephants

    他們特殊的記憶可以保留大象的氣味。

  • outside their herd as well.

    在他們的族群之外也是如此。

  • It's one of these old but familiar odors that's caught the matriarch's attention.

    就是這樣一種古老而又熟悉的氣味,引起了族長的注意。

  • She bellows into the air,

    她對著空氣發出鐘聲。

  • sending out a sound wave that rings across the savannah.

    發出的聲波,響徹大草原。

  • But it travels even further through the earth as infrasonic rumbles.

    但隨著次聲波的隆隆聲,它在地球上傳得更遠。

  • Elephants up to 10 kilometers away can receive these rumbles with their feet.

    10公里外的大象都能用腳接收到這些隆隆聲。

  • If the matriarch's nose is right, her herd should expect a response.

    如果族長的鼻子是對的,她的羊群應該會有反應。

  • Smelling the secretions from her daughter's temporal glands,

    聞著女兒顳部腺體的分泌物。

  • our elephant's mother can sense her daughter's unease

    大象的媽媽能感覺到女兒的不安

  • about this unfamiliar encounter.

    關於這次陌生的相遇。

  • As the herd of unknown elephants approaches,

    當不知名的象群靠近時。

  • trunks from both herds rise into the air, sounding trumpets of alarm.

    兩群人的樹幹騰空而起,發出警報的號角。

  • But upon recognition, apprehension quickly gives way to happy rumbles.

    但一經確認,忐忑不安的心情很快就會讓人感到幸福的轟鳴。

  • Members from each herd recognize each other despite time apart,

    儘管相隔時間較長,但每個族群的成員都能認出彼此。

  • and many investigate each other's mouths with their trunks

    犬牙交錯

  • to smell what their counterparts have been eating.

    來聞聞他們的同行都吃了什麼。

  • With the reunion now in full swing, both herds head toward their final destination:

    現在的團圓,兩群人都向著最後的目的地前進。

  • the long-awaited watering hole.

    期待已久的水塘。

  • Here, older elephants suck up to 8 liters of water into their trunks

    在這裡,年長的大象將8升的水吸進鼻子裡。

  • before spraying the contents on themselves to cool off.

    才將內容物噴在自己身上冷卻。

  • Meanwhile, our young elephant plays in the mud with her peers,

    與此同時,我們的小象和它的同伴們在泥巴里玩耍。

  • digging into the muck and even using her trunk as a snorkel

    挖泥巴,甚至把它的鼻子當做呼吸管使用。

  • to breathe while submerged.

    在水下呼吸。

  • The pair of matriarchs look contentedly on their herds,

    這對母子滿足地看著自己的牛群。

  • before turning their trunks to the horizon once more.

    才將樹幹再一次轉向地平線。

As a breeze blows through the savannah,

當微風吹過大草原的時候。

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B2 中高級 中文 TED-Ed 大象 鼻子 嗅覺 氣味 群落

大象用來交流的祕密信號--蔡斯-拉杜和布魯斯-舒爾特。 (The secret signals elephants use to communicate - Chase LaDue and Bruce A. Schulte)

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    林宜悉 發佈於 2021 年 03 月 15 日
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