Fun Fact February 18, 2020
18 February 2020
It’s the largest animal on earth. Some fun facts today about the Blue whale. Blue whales are baleen whales, which means they have fringed plates of fingernail-like material, called baleen, attached to their upper jaws. The giant animals feed by first gulping an enormous mouthful of water, expanding the pleated skin on their throat and belly to take it in. Then the whale’s massive tongue forces the water out through the thin, overlapping baleen plates. Thousands of krill, a tiny shrimp-like creature, are left behind and then swallowed. During certain times of the year, a single adult blue whale consumes about 4 tons of krill a day. These magnificent marine mammals rule the oceans at up to 100 feet long and upwards of 200 tons. Their tongues alone can weigh as much as an elephant. The heart of the blue whale is five feet long and weighs 400 pounds. They often spend summers feeding in polar waters and undertake lengthy migrations towards the Equator as winter arrives. Blue whales are among the loudest animals on the planet. They emit a series of pulses, groans, and moans, and it’s thought that, in good conditions, blue whales can hear each other up to 1,000 miles away. Scientists think they use these vocalizations not only to communicate, but, along with their excellent hearing, to sonar-navigate the lightless ocean depths. The average lifespan of a Blue whale is estimated to be between 80 and 90 years.
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