The Blue whale according to MsmmalMAP
These colossal Leviathans are up to 30 meters long and can weigh up to 200 tons. They reach this size on a primarily krill diet – although, they require 3 – 4 tons of krill daily to satisfy their energy requirements. Blue whales are baleen whales. Like other baleen whales, they gulp mouthfuls of water and their tongues push the water through their baleen plates to filter out krill that is then swallowed. Blue whales spend the summer feeding in polar waters and migrate to the Equator when winter arrives.
Blue whales live in all the world’s oceans. They are usually found alone or in pairs but are occasionally seen as small groups. They have excellent hearing and their vocalisations are thought to heard by other blue whales 1 600 km away (in good conditions, of course).
Virtually nothing is known about blue whale mating behaviour. What we do know is that usually one calf is born every 2 – 3 years. Holding the record as the world’s biggest baby, blue whale calves are 8 meters long and 4 tons at birth. Growing at a rate of 90 kgs a day, calves reach sexual maturity at 5 – 10 years.
Blue whales live long – scientists have discovered that they can get a close estimate of a deceased whale’s age by counting the layers of its wax-like earplugs. Kind of like counting the growth rings of trees.
The IUCN classifies blue whales as an endangered species. The Antarctic blue whale, a sub-species of blue whale is listed as critically endangered as the population is less than 3% of what it was three generations ago.
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