Because dolphins are highly social and vocalize among themselves with a wide range of sounds, it has been conjectured that they might possess an almost humanlike intelligence. In the 1950s and '60s the American neurologist John Lilly conducted well-publicized experiments based on this concept, in which he attempted to communicate with dolphins in their own "language," but other scientists have rejected his work as poorly documented and lacking scientific validity. Most researchers agree that dolphins exhibit a level of intelligence greater than that of dogs and even comparable to that of some primates--but not human beings. Research into dolphin intelligence continues at centers such as Hawaii's Kewalo Basin Marine Mammal Laboratory.

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