02.12.2021

Humpback whale

This whale has a clumsy short body, long peculiar pectoral fins and a hump-shaped dorsal fin. On the head of a humpback whale there are several rows of bumps (or warts), each of which has 1-2 hairs.

This whale is considered to be one of the most widely known whales. It came close to extermination before it was studied by specialists. The humpback whale became famous for its “singing” (they can make a variety of sounds), his voice hit the gramophone records. Since then, repeated attempts have been made to record and analyze whale sounds. The whale willingly allows you to follow itself: from the ship you can watch how it jumps out of the water, swims on its back, gestures in the air with its large pectoral fins, and emits peculiar sounds.

The growing interest in humpback whales has contributed to the study and conservation of this species, as well as other species of whales. The humpback whale looks very different from other minke whales. The body is massive, which is especially noticeable due to the relatively short length of the animal – 12-15 m; weight – 30-35 tons. The back is black; the belly is white with wide stripes. Long rather narrow pectoral fins are white at the bottom. Their size is 4, 5 m. The edges of the fins are uneven, bumpy.

The caudal lobes are black above, almost white below; their posterior margin is serrated. On the belly of a humpback whale there are 12 to 26 stripes-folds. They are wider and deeper than the fin whale. In each of the two rows of the whalebone, there are approximately 400 plates, which are 60-75 cm long.

They are usually brown in color. The humpback whale is found in all oceans. He prefers to stay in coastal areas and has a pronounced ability to avoid shoals. The whale feeds on pelagic crustaceans, schooling fish (capelin, herring, cod, Arctic cod, etc.). Birds are also found in his stomach. He spends winter in tropical or subtropical seas. Mating takes place in late winter or early spring. Cubs will be born at the same time of the year. The gestation period is a little less than a year. The calf at the moment of birth has a length of 4, 5-5, 0 m. It feeds on breast milk for 5 months and during this time reaches a length of 8 m. Sexual maturity occurs at the age of 20-22 months.

The body length in the male at this time is 12 m, in the female – 12, 5 m. The life expectancy is presumably 30 years. A female can give birth to one cub every year, but this usually happens every two years. Humpback whales emit relatively low fountains. They are immersed for 6-8 minutes.

When diving over water, a tail is visible. A large number of parasites often settle on the body of whales of this species. Some of them do not harm it, but use it as a substrate. In the Strait of Davis, humpback whales appear from the end of April and remain until November. Most often they can be seen from August to October at Frederikshob. In the XIX century. it was constantly mined in the fjords of this area (up to 13 pieces per year). Whaling was also carried out near Suckertoppen.

Humpback whale hunting is currently prohibited.

In bowhead waters, the minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata), akin to the humpback whale, lives on all the shores of the island except the northern ones. A blue whale can sometimes be seen in the Strait of Davis.

One thought on “Humpback whale

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