Whales

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by chloekitty123
Last updated 5 years ago

Discipline:
Science
Subject:
Animals

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Whales

Whales

Whales range in size from the blue whale, the largest animal known to have ever existed,[2] at 30 m (98 ft) and 180 tonnes (180 long tons; 200 short tons), to pygmy species such as the pygmy sperm whale at 3.5 m (11 ft). Whales inhabit all the world's oceans and number in the millions, with annual population growth rate estimates for various species ranging from 3% to 13%.[3] Whales are long-lived, humpback whales living for up to 77 years, while bowhead whales may live for more than a century.Human hunting of whales from the seventeenth century until 1986 radically reduced the populations of some whale species.Whales play a role in creation myths, for example among the Inuit, and they are revered by coastal people in countries such as Ghana and Vietnam.

Some species of large whales are listed as endangered by multinational organizations, such as CITES, as well as governments and advocacy groups. This status is due primarily to the impact of whaling. Whales have been hunted commercially since the seventeenth century for whale oil, whale meat, baleen, and ambergris (a perfume ingredient from the intestine of sperm whales).[58] More than two million whales were taken during the twentieth century,[59] and by the middle of that century, many populations were severely depleted.The International Whaling Commission banned commercial whaling in 1986.[60] The ban is not absolute, and some whaling continues under the auspices of scientific research[60] (sometimes not proved[61]) or aboriginal rights. Current whaling nations are Norway, Iceland, and Japan as well as the aboriginal communities of Siberia, Alaska, and northern Canada.

Whales generally are classed as predators. Their food ranges from microscopic plankton to very large animals.Toothed whales eat fish and squid, which they hunt by the use of echolocation. Killer whales sometimes eat other marine mammals, including whales.Baleen whales, such as humpbacks and blues, mainly eat krill when feeding in the higher latitudes (such as the Southern Ocean). They take in enormous amounts of seawater that they expel through their baleen plates; the krill in the seawater are retained on the plates and then swallowed.[19] Whales do not drink seawater. They extract water indirectly from their food by metabolizing fat.

Orca Whales or better known as killer whales are tamed for the use of circuses

Blue whales are the largest mammal in the world

Humback Whales are known for leaping out of the water


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