Tag Archive: whale

Baleen Whale

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This photo was taken by wikipedia user Whit Welles

The baleen whales, also called whalebone whales, form the Mysticeti, one of the two suborders of the Cetacea ( whales dolphins and porpoises). Baleen whales are usually larger than toothed whales, females being bigger than males.   This group includes the largest animal species, the blue whale.  The baleen whale has two blowholes, causing a V shaped blow.

Despite their enormous size they have the ability to jump fully above the surface. One whale that is known for their water feats is the humpback whale.  Baleen whales can grow to larger than 110 feet long, and can weigh up to 420,000 pounds.

Baleen whales have baleen, a straight, stiff material that hangs from the roof of their upper jaw. It is made of keratin, (the same substance that your fingernails and hair is made of). The inside of baleen have little hairy plates, that help filter krill, plankton, and small fish.

File:LMazzuca Fin Whale.jpg

This photo was taken by wikipedia user Lori Mazzuca

The Fin whale is an fairly endangered animal. They are very large whales, and the ones that live in the northern hemisphere can be around 60 feet. The ones in the southern hemisphere tend to reach closer to 70 feet. It is the same for males and females. Fin whales can be found in all the major oceans, with water temps polar and tropical. Though the Fin whale can live in different temperatures, they are found more commonly in colder climates. The only known predator of the Fin Whale is the killer whale, and even so, there are not many sightings of attacks. The Fin Whale is a baleen whale, and it eats only small fish, squid and other little crustaceans. The gestation period for a calf is 11-12 months.

Fun fact: fin whales can live up to 140 years!

gray whale

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this is a photo of a gray whale sky hopping

The gray whale is a baleen whale and so it feeds mainly on krill and other very small crustaceans. the grey whale also lives in pods of 3-16 whales but they form groups of hundreds of whales when in feeding groups. The grey whale lives mainly on the coast from Alaska down to Mexico and that is their migration route too. Their gestation period is about 13 months and a newborn calf weighs as much as 1.8 tons. Grey whales have a life expectancy of about 50-60 years and  they are a protected species. Grey whales grow  to be 45-50 feet in length at the most, females are slightly larger than females though. The grey whale also can grow to be 36 tonnes! Overall the grey whale is an amazing and beautiful animal.

Orca Whale

File:Orca porpoising.jpg

This photo was taken by Wikipedia user Minette Layne

the Orca Whale (commonly known as the killer whale), is a beautiful animal and is about 27-33 feet long. The orca whale eats a very diverse diet of water animals. They eat fish, squid, types of sharks and marine animals, (including whales and seals), turtles , octopus and birds. The orca whale is called a whale but is actually the largest species of dolphins. Orca whales live in pods, groups of orcas that are about 6-40 whales large. The orca whale is found in all of the oceans of the world. the gestation period for the Orca whale is around 16-17 months and their life expectancy is 50-60 years for males and 90 years for females. Right now the Orca whale is not endangered.

Beluga Whale


Taken by Wikipedia user Stan Shebs

The Beluga Whale lives along the coasts of Alaska and Canada. They are beautiful animals and have a number of songs written about them. Their size is usually around 15 feet long, but males are slightly larger than females. The beluga whale is a near threatened animal and feeds mainly on fish, squid and crustaceans, ( crab, lobsters and shrimp ), and sea worms. Beluga whales life span is usually  about 25-30 years , and it usually takes about 14-15 months to complete the gestation period.