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Surname: Blue whale
Latin name: Balaenoptera musculus
mass: up to 200 tons
Older: 40 - 90 years
Appearance: blue-gray skin, 50cm thick layer of bacon (blubber)
Sexual dimorphism: Yes
Nutrition type: predominantly plankton (planktivor)
food: Plankton, krill, fish
original origin: unknown
Sleep-wake rhythm: diurnal
natural enemies: /
sexual maturity: about the age of seven
mating season: July August
gestation: 11 months
litter size: 1 cub
social behavior: Loner or family association
Threatened with extinction: Yes
Further profiles of animals can be found in the Encyclopaedia.
Interesting facts about the blue whale
- The blue whale belongs to the order of the baleen whales and is considered with its 30 meters body length and an average weight of two hundred tons as the heaviest and largest, if not the longest animal, which ever lived on the earth.
- Blue whales colonize all the oceans along the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans, depending on the seasons. Blue Whales hardly stay up near the coast.
- In winter, they are mostly found in subtropical waters where they reproduce. In summer, however, they move in the polar areas, where they go in search of food.
- As a baleen whale, the blue whale does not have any teeth, but huge horn plates, which serve to filter its food from the water.
- Blue whales eat several tons of food every day. This mainly consists of krill, plankton and small fish.
- Blue Whales must breathe to the water surface every two to three minutes. However, you can get by for a maximum of twenty minutes without air. They usually move at depths of up to 150 meters.
- On the surface of the water, the blue whale breathes through its blow hole and emits a huge fountain, which can be up to nine meters high.
- Blue whales rarely live in groups, but are generally solitary. Only mothers with their calves often join together in small communities, which are not social structures.
- After mating and a gestation period of eleven months, the female gives birth to a cub that already weighs over two tons. It remains in the care of his mother for several months before being weaned on the route into the feeding grounds and then goes there foraging independently.
- Despite its huge body volume, a blue whale can cover up to fifty kilometers an hour. Normally, these gigantic marine mammals barely swim faster than twenty kilometers per hour.
- The blue whale is on the list of endangered species today and has not been allowed to be caught since the 1960s when the population dropped to about three thousand. Today, an estimated ten to twenty thousand copies are living worldwide.
- Time and again, dead blue whales stranded on the coasts of Canada. These animals are usually trapped in their foraging in the wake of sudden weather changes of ice and suffocate.