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Possible correction on loudest animal with respect to size?

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952918.  Mon Nov 26, 2012 11:57 am Reply with quote

Love the show. Really good quality (if you can get past all the penis-referencing). But could anyone enlighten me?

I was kind of puzzled when watching the "Jungle-episode".

Say a whale is about 30m, the noisy insect is 2mm (0.002m)

For doubling the "noise-power", there is an increase of about 3 dB (decibel scales are not linear but logarithmic).

If the blue whale indeed produces 188 dB and the insect more than 99 (say 100 dB) there is a difference of 88 dB.

From insect to blue whale is 88/3=29 times a doubling of "noise-power".

If the insects length were to size up with the same scale, it would be:
0.002 x 2^29 =1073742m which is about 1000km.

The whale suffices with only 30m to create the noise, and thus wins in a noise-to-size ratio battle.

Correct me if i'm wrong. Alan would still have lost with a point.... too many honey traps.


952937.  Mon Nov 26, 2012 2:17 pm Reply with quote

Since both animals are in 3d - then it's 30^3 compared to .002^3...

or a ratio of... 3.37510

I dunno.

952954.  Mon Nov 26, 2012 4:35 pm Reply with quote

I agree with the insect winning the noise/volume battle, but since Stephen spoke about a size of 2mm and not a volume. Ah well, it's a lot of noise anyways.

Prof Wind Up Merchant
958769.  Wed Dec 26, 2012 7:42 am Reply with quote

I thought it was a kind of shrimp that made the loudest noise in respect to size.

958797.  Wed Dec 26, 2012 10:49 am Reply with quote

Not many shrimps in the jungle, thoughbut.

989999.  Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:11 am Reply with quote

I think this should be corrected as the question stated loudest creature which spends most of its life under water. The answer provided "pond skater" clearly shows this creature lives above the water not under it?

So i am confused as to the answer given as it would seem the whale is the correct answer.

Can someone please check this out as it has been bugging me for hours

Thanks Barry M

990061.  Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:10 am Reply with quote

Welcome bazzuk and you have a good point, in that pond skaters do live on the surface of the water, not under it - see

990454.  Fri Apr 19, 2013 6:54 pm Reply with quote

Hi Jenny

My point exactly as i thought they lived their juvenile stages under water but do not make a sound until adulthood where they would then live above water.

I must admit i think Alan Davies was correct and the trap was unjustified.

i have emailed the elves regarding this hope i get it posted to qibbles soon.

990455.  Fri Apr 19, 2013 6:55 pm Reply with quote

Hi bazzuk and welcome

Average Allstar
1182400.  Tue Mar 15, 2016 3:48 pm Reply with quote

Hey... Little late on this topic but I just watched this episode too. Doubling db in spl is 6db or 20 loq(2) not 3db. The 3db doubling effect has to do with the dbu's or dbv's, cant remember.

In which case, the blue whale is 89 db in spl louder. So if it doubles in sound preasure levels every 6db over, the blue whale is about 30,000 times louder. At 30 meteres long, divide it by 1000, it manufactures the same db in spl as the insect but at 1mm larger.


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