SOME OF THE SPECIAL PHYSICAL ABILITIES ..
nose opening top of head
( so when at surface of the water the whale breathes more effectively )
the snout or rostrum streamlined
( easier for the whales to catch prey )
tail broad and flat flukes
( super effective swimming ability )
WHALES 2 DISTINCT GROUPS
toothed whales ( ODONTOCETI )
baleen whales ( MYSTICETI )
the TOOTHED WHALES are the smaller species of whales
there are about 65 species
the BALEEN WHALES are the biggest of all the whales !!!
on land an animal as large as the BLUE WHALE would be crushed by its own weight
without large heavy bones to support it !!
IN WATER THE BLUE WHALE'S BODY IS SUPPORTED BY THE BUOYANCY OF THE WATER
because of the effects of the water the BLUE WHALE has no need for heavy bones
THE BUOYANT WATER AND THE HUGE AMOUNTS OF AVAILABLE FOOD SUPPLY
HELPED THE BLUE WHALE TO DEVELOP TO ITS ENORMOUS SIZE
THE BLUE WHALE IS A HUGE OCEAN ANIMAL
the blue whale looks like a fish
but is NOT a fish
fish have vertical tails
WHALES HAVE HORIZONTAL TAILS ! ! !
fish breathe with gills .. under the surface of the water .. within the water
WHALES BREATHE WITH LUNGS .. AT THE SURFACE OF THE WATER .. IN THE AIR ! ! !
fish lay eggs
WHALES HAVE LIVE BABIES ! ! !
fish do not have hair
WHALES A FEW STIFF HAIRS ON THEIR HEADS and HAVE WHISKERS ! ! !
THE BLUE WHALE IS A MAMMAL
a mammal is an animal
with a furry body
with a warm self regulating temperature
that nurse their young with their own body's milk
BLUE WHALES ARE BALEEN WHALES
blue whales are also rorqual whales
THERE ARE 6 RORQUAL WHALE SPECIES
THE THROATS AND ABDOMENS OF RORQUAL WHALES HAVE LONG GROOVES OR PLEATS
rorquals can have 10 - 100 throat grooves
EACH GROOVE CAN BE ABOUT 1/2 - 1 1/2 INCHES DEEP
these throat grooves allow the whale's throat to expand and the mouth to open HUGE ! ! !
Balaenoptera musculus is the scientific name for ALL blue whales
THERE ARE 4 SUBSPECIES POPULATION GROUPS OF BLUE WHALES
these subspecies are 4 distinct groups within the 1 species of Balaenoptera musculus
THESE 4 SUBSPECIES MAY INTERACT WITH EACH OTHER
these 4 subspecies are able to mate with each other
and may actually do so
Balaenoptera musculus musculus
Balaenoptera musculus indica
Balaenoptera musculus brevicauda
Balaenoptera musculus intermedia
these subspecies have been identified and determined by the geographic location of their RANGES
Balaenopter musculus musculus live ..
in the northern hemisphere ..
in the north ATLANTIC OCEAN
in the north PACIFIC OCEAN ..
called the NORTHERN BLUE WHALE
3rd largest of the 4 subspecies of blue whales
80 - 90 feet long
weighs 130 - 150 tons
Balaenoptera musculus indica live ..
in the southern hemisphere ..
in the INDIAN OCEAN ..
called the INDIAN OCEAN BLUE WHALE
2nd largest of the 4 subspecies of blue whales
90 feet long
weighs 150 tons
Balaenoptera musculus brevicauda live ..
in the southern hemisphere ..
in the southwest PACIFIC OCEAN ..
called the PYGMY BLUE WHALE
smallest of the 4 subspecies of blue whales
80 feet long
weighs 70 tons
their bodies are proportionately longer than the other blue whales
their tails are proportionately shorter than the other blue whales
Balaenoptera musculus intermedia live ..
in the southern hemisphere ..
in the extreme southeastern PACIFIC OCEAN
in the extreme southern ATLANTIC OCEAN ..
called the SOUTHERN BLUE WHALE
the largest of the 4 subspecies of blue whales
100 feet long
weighs 150 - 159 tons
the blue whale's entire body color is a
mottled with paler light grey spots
THE TIPS AND UNDERSIDES OF FINS ARE OFTEN WHITE
the mottled color pattern is unique to each blue whale ( like human fingerprints )
BIOLOGIST SCIENTISTS PHOTOGRAPH THEIR DORSAL FINS
then they can use the photos to identify each whale ! ! !
SOME BLUE WHALES HAVE DIATOMS ON THEIR SIDES AND UNDERSIDES
the diatoms cling to the surface of the BLUE WHALES SKIN
THE DIATOMS DO NOT HURT THE BLUE WHALE
diatoms are tiny tiny tiny sulfur yellow colored plant plankton algae
THESE DIATOMS LIVE IN THE COLD WATERS AROUND ANTARCTICA AND IN THE ARCTIC OCEAN
this coloring is why blue whales were sometimes called sulphur bottom whales
WITH AN EXTREMELY SMALL DORSAL FIN
( called dorsal fin because the top of whale's body is the DORSAL area of their body )
WITH LONG THIN PECTORAL FLIPPERS
(called pectoral flippers because the 2 sides of the whale's body are the PECTORAL areas )
80 - 100 feet in length
BLUE WHALES ARE ABOUT THE COMBINED LENGTH OF 3 SCHOOL BUSES ! ! !
blue whales that are 100 feet in length are as big as a JUMBO JET !!!
BLUE WHALES huge size is one of the amazing miracles of Creation !
ADULT BLUE WHALES WEIGH BETWEEN
100 - 150 TONS
200,000 - 300,000 POUNDS ! ! !
THE ADULT FEMALE BLUE WHALE IS HEAVIER THAN THE ADULT MALE BLUE WHALE
a full grown adult female blue whale's weight is equal to the combined weight of
25 ADULT MALE ELEPHANTS ! ! !
the Apatosaurus is believed to have been a now extinct giant size reptile..
THE APATOSARUS WAS THE HEAVIEST extinct giant size reptile !!!
1 Apatosaurus may have weighed a teeny 25 tons and was about 75 feet long !!
not big at all ... compared to BIG BLUE !!!
THE BLUE WHALE'S HEAD IS ABOUT 1/4 OF ITS TOTAL BODY LENGTH
the upper top part of the head is called the rostrum
THE ROSTRUM IS ..
THE ROSTRUM HAS A RIDGE FROM THE FRONT OF THE BLOWHOLES TO THE TIP OF THE SNOUT
have HUGE COMPLEX BRAINS
BLUE WHALES ARE VERY VERY VERY INTELLIGENT ! ! !
springy . smooth . slippery
( their skin feels very very warm and wet and very soft to a human petting one ! ! ! )
BLUE WHALES HAVE AN AMAZING HIGHLY DEVELOPED SENSE OF TOUCH ! ! !
BLUE WHALES NOSTRILS ARE CALLED BLOWHOLES
located on top of head
STRONG STRONG VALVE MUSCLES OPEN AND CLOSE THE BLOWHOLES
surrounded on 3 sides by raised ridge called SPLASH GUARD
BREATHE THROUGH BLOWHOLES
pull fresh air in
push stale air out
the blue whale has very short nasal passage
THE SHORT LENGTH OF THE PASSAGE ALLOWS FOR A SUPER FAST BREATHING PROCESS !
SENSE OF SMELL
blue whales have a super super great sense of smell
BLUE WHALES ARE EVEN ABLE TO SMELL ALGAE ! ! !
being able to smell algae helps them to locate KRILL ! ! !
( because krill EAT algae )
THE SPOUT OF THE BLUE WHALE IS A TALL COLUMN OF EXHALED VAPOR
the blue whale produces this cloud of vapor when it exhales
THE VAPOR IS AIR AND WATER COMBINED
sometimes it has mucus in it
the blue whale's spout is distinctive
20 FEET TALL
STRAIGHT LIKE A COLUMN
the spout of the blue whale is also called the spray or the blow
THE SPOUT LOOKS MISTY BECAUSE THE STEAMY COMPRESSED AIR IS EXHALED INTO THE COLDER
AIR OF THE ATMOSPHERE
( like human breath into the air on a cold day )
ALSO CONTAINS A BIT OF SEAWATER THAT COLLECTS IN AIR PASSAGES
A BLUE WHALE'S MOUTH IS HUGE ! ! !
the blue whale's mouth is 20 feet wide
THE LARGEST extinct giant reptile THAT may have LIVED COULD WALK INSIDE THE MOUTH OF THE BLUE WHALE ! ! !
THE BLUE WHALE'S TONGUE WEIGHS AS MUCH AS AN ADULT MALE ELEPHANT
blue whales swallow their food whole
KRILL AND CRUSTACEANS ARE SO TEENY TINY THAT BLUE WHALES DO NOT NEED TO CHEW THEM !
THE BLUE WHALE has BALEEN PLATES INSTEAD OF TEETH !!!!
BLUE WHALES HAVE 260 - 400 BALEEN PLATES ON EACH SIDE OF THEIR MOUTHS
the baleen plates are black in color
they grow from each side of the upper jaw
( where teeth would be if the blue whale had teeth )
the inside upper part of the mouth is called the upper palate
THE BALEEN PLATES ARE
about 20 inches long towards the front of the mouth
about 40 inches long towards the back of the mouth
EACH PLATE IS
22 inches wide
1 inch thick
THE BALEEN PLATES ARE MADE OF KERATIN
( keratin is just like human fingernails )
except that the texture of baleen is not smooth like human fingernails
baleen are fibrous
THE PLATES FRAY AT THE ENDS INTO
fine . brushy . bushy HAIRS
THE BUSHY HAIRS ARE
inside the mouth
close to the tongue
these bushy hair fibers act as a filter to hold food in
BLUE WHALES HAVE BEAUTIFUL beautiful BEAUTIFUL beautiful EYES
( a blue whale looks at a human right in the eyes ..
the look is very deep and intense .. the look is like searching ..
a blue whale looks at a human as though you are known to this amazing being ..
it is then really obvious that these amazing animals are just so much more
than humans seem to think they are ..
this look is something much more than the way a human looks at another human that they know personally )
it is said that " the eyes are the windows to the soul " ..
based on the depth and intensity of a blue whale's gaze ..
these amazing animals must be even more beautiful on the inside than they are on the outside
BLUE WHALES BEAUTIFUL EYES ARE ENORMOUS
a blue whale's eye is as big as a COFFEE CUP ! ! !
BLUE WHALE'S EYES ARE A DARK DARK GREYISH COLOR
blue whale's pupils are huge and very expressive !
blue whales have great great great EYESIGHT ! ! !
THE BLUE WHALE'S EARS ARE LOCATED ON THE SIDES OF THEIR HEADS
each ear opening is a few inches behind each eye
THE BLUE WHALE'S EARS ARE SURFACE EARS THAT DO NOT PROTRUDE FROM THE HEAD
the ears are about the size of a pencil eraser - about 1/4 of an inch across
THE EARS EACH HAVE A PROTECTIVE MEMBRANE COVERING
the covering keeps water from getting in their ears
deep water does not have much light
SEEING IS DIFFICULT
blue whales have a very highly developed sense of hearing
THE BLUE WHALE'S HEARING IS ASTOUNDING ! ! !
blue whales can determine the precise direction that a sound is coming from ! ! !
BLUE WHALES ARE RORQUAL WHALES
rorqual blue whales have pleated throat grooves
THESE GROOVES EXTEND FROM THE BLUE WHALE'S THROAT TO THE NAVEL OR BELLY BUTTON
these grooves expand when the blue whale feeds
THE GROOVES EXPAND SO THE BLUE WHALES CAN TAKE HUGE AMOUNTS OF KRILL FILLED WATER
INTO THEIR MOUTHS
blue whales have 55 - 68 pleated throat grooves
THE THROAT GROOVES ARE ABOUT 1 INCH DEEP
INSIDE THE MOUTH THE BLUE WHALE'S THROAT IS ONLY A COUPLE OF INCHES ACROSS !!!!!!! wow!!!!
THE BLUE WHALE'S HEART IS AS BIG AS A SMALL CAR !
the blue whale's heart weighs 1/2 ton - about 1,000 pounds
THE BLUE WHALE'S HEART PUMPS VERY SLOWLY
only 9 times per minute
( the average number of times for a human heart is 75 times per minute )
the blue whale's body has 7 tons of blood ! ! ! WOW !!!
( humans exchange 10 - 15 % of the air in their lungs for fresh air when they breathe )
BLUE WHALES EXCHANGE 80 - 90 % OF THE AIR IN THEIR LUNGS WHEN THEY BREATHE !!!
blue whales breath in 500 gallons of AIR in 2 SECONDS ! ! !
THE BLUE WHALE HAS AMAZING BREATHING CAPABILITIES !!!
blue whales can stay submerged underwater for at least 30 minutes
( it is not known by scientists just HOW LONG they can actually stay under ! )
THE BLUE WHALE USUALLY SURFACES EVERY 2 - 5 MINUTES
THE BLUE WHALE'S FLIPPERS ARE LIKE ARMS
the flippers of the blue whale are
ONLY ABOUT 12 % OF TOTAL BODY LENGTH
blue whales use their flippers to steer their bodies in the direction they need to go
THE DORSAL FIN OF THE BLUE WHALE IS ..
or .. a bit curved
THE DORSAL FIN IS 3/4 OF THE WAY TOWARDS THE TAIL OF THE BODY OF THE BLUE WHALE
the dorsal fin is usually only about 12 inches tall
THE DORSAL FIN CAN BE GREATLY DIFFERENT IN SIZE AND SHAPE !!!
the vertical dorsal fin functions as a SAIL !!!!
( this helps the blue whale to swim faster )
THE TAIL OF THE BLUE WHALE IS CALLED THE FLUKE
the fluke is ..
BACK EDGE SMOOTH
SLIGHT MIDDLE NOTCH
the tail fluke is 25 feet wide
THE BLUE WHALE'S TAIL IS HORIZONTAL TO THE BODY
the blue whale moves its POWERFUL tail fluke up and down
to move its huge body through the water
THE LIFESPAN OF THIS AMAZING ANIMAL IS JUST NOT REALLY PRECISELY KNOWN
BUT MANY SCIENTISTS BELIEVE THAT BLUE WHALES LIVE 150 - 200 YEARS or much MORE ..
THAT IS JUST SO AMAZING ... WHAT AN INCREDIBLE BEING !!!
ALL BLUE WHALE SPECIES adults EAT A DIET OF CRUSTACEANS
a crustacean is ..
an invertebrate ..
a small marine animal with a segmented body covered by an exoskeleton
a crustacean is a type of zooplankton
zooplankton are the animal part of the group of life forms referred to as PLANKTON
plankton are two types of marine life forms that float in large colonies
plankton can be either plants or animals
BLUE WHALES EAT MOSTLY ONE TYPE OF CRUSTACEAN CALLED .. KRILL ..
KRILL ARE ALSO CALLED EUPHAUSLIDS ..
KRILL are .. MARINE INVERTEBRATES . CRUSTACEANS . ZOOPLANKTON . ANIMALS
KRILL ARE ..
like shrimp in appearance
pale pink in color
KRILL ARE ..
teeny teeny tiny in size - usually about 2 1/2 inches long - may be up to 3 inches long
KRILL LIVE IN ALL THE OCEANS OF THE WORLD
there are at least 86 species of krill throughout the world
KRILL BELONG TO THE ORDER Euphausiacea
krill classification ..
KINGDOM .. Animalia
Phylum .. Arthropoda
Sub Phylum .. Crustacea
Class .. Malacostraca
Order .. Euphausiacea
KRILL ARE FURTHER CLASSIFIED INTO 2 FAMILIES ..
with 1 genus
and 1 species
with 10 genus
and 85 species
KRILL LIVE IN HUGE VERTICAL COLUMNS
there are 7 species of krill in the southern ocean waters around ANTARCTICA
THE MOST COMMON SPECIES IS CALLED THE ANTARCTIC KRILL
THE MOST COMMON SPECIES IN THE NORTHERN OCEANS IS CALLED THE NORTHERN KRILL
THE MOST COMMON SPECIES IN THE MIDDLE LATITUDE OCEANS IS CALLED THE PACIFIC KRILL
THE MOST COMMON SPECIES IN THE TROPICAL OCEANS IS CALLED THE TROPICS KRILL
THE COLD WATERS AROUND THE ARCTIC AND ANTARCTICA ARE RICH IN .. OXYGEN and SUNLIGHT
the presence of these elements make a great place for plant phytoplankton algae to grow
KRILL AND OTHER CRUSTACEAN FORMS OF ANIMAL ZOOPLANKTON
EAT PLANT PHYTOPLANKTON ALGAE
there is at least 20 % more blue whale food in the cold polar waters of the Earth
than in the warm tropic waters of the Earth
IT IS ESTIMATED THAT A 75 - 80 TON BLUE WHALE NEEDS
1.5 MILLION CALORIES A DAY TO LIVE ! ! !
at the summer polar feeding grounds
Blue Whales will eat about 3 million calories each day !!!
3 MILLION CALORIES OF KRILL IS ABOUT 4 TONS IN WEIGHT or ABOUT 8000 POUNDS
this is about 12,000 vegetable patties and buns ! ! ! WOW !!!!!
4 TONS OF KRILL ARE ABOUT 40 MILLION KRILL
that means blue whales eat about 40 million individual krill each day ! ! !
IT WOULD TAKE 10 MILLION KRILL TO FILL A LARGE CONSTRUCTION TRUCK
so A BLUE WHALE EATS 4 TRUCK LOADS OF KRILL A DAY ! ! !
WOW O WOW!!!
the blue whale will store the nutrients and energy obtained from krill as fat blubber
to get nutrients from for the rest of the year !!
DURING THE MIGRATION TIME .. BLUE WHALES EAT VERY LITTLE ..
SO THEY REALLY NEED THE STORED NUTRIENTS
blue whales can feed throughout their range .. in any waters of the world
POLAR . TEMPERATE . TROPICAL
BLUE WHALES CAN EAT ALL YEAR
they fast only because they have difficulty finding food during the winter spent in the warm waters
of the tropics of the hemisphere that they live in
THE MAIN FEEDING SEASON OF THE BLUE WHALE IS THE SUMMER TIME
of the hemisphere that they live in
THE WORLD'S LARGEST ANIMAL EATS ONE OF THE WORLD'S SMALLEST ANIMALS ! !! !
|THE BEST AND MOST BEAUTIFUL THINGS IN THE WORLD CANNOT |
ALWAYS BE SEEN
OR EVEN TOUCHED
SOMETIMES THEY MUST BE FELT WITH THE HEART
|Look at GOD's Creation|
you will see HIM
|" And the LORD commanded the fish "|