Frickin' Dolphins With Frickin' Laser Beams On Their Fricken Heads...well sort of

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Many of you have probably seen the Austin Powers movie trilogy, and probably laughed at the clips where Dr. Evil is always in search of "Frickin' sharks with frickin' laser beams attached to their frickin' heads" As far-fetched as marine animals being used as weapons might seem, the U.S. Navy has been using dolphins and sea lions for decades, though as far as I can tell none have actually had laser beams attached to their heads.

According to THIS article, dolphins and sea lions are being used to patrol the waters outside U.S. Naval bases. The animals are trained using Skinnerian principles, mainly with positive reinforcement in the form of treats. Don't feel bad for the animals, however, as none have been killed on duty in the entire history of the program. This program is just another way that B.F. Skinner has influenced society with his behavioral approach to psychology.

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This is a really interesting example of conditioning. It's awesome that Dr. Evil's request has (sort of) come to fruition.

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This page contains a single entry by huhta009 published on October 23, 2011 9:51 PM.

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