Types of Whales – How Many Whale Species Are There

Whales aren’t only the most important animals alive today, they’re the most important animals to possess ever lived. Hunted to the sting of extinction, they’re making something of a comeback, though some species are recovering more quickly than others.
Whale adaptations

Types of Whales

sulfur bottom – Sulphur Bottom Whale – Sibbald’s Rorqual
Balaenoptera musculus

Average adult length 25m (males) 26.2 m (females).
Average human body weight 100 -120 tonnes.
A whalebone whale .

The largest animals ever to possess lived, dwarfing even the most important dinosaurs, all figures about blue whales are awesome. Their cardiovascular system pumps 10 tonnes of blood through its body employing a heart the dimensions of alittle car. a toddler could crawl down the whales’ main vessel , the aorta. In its development, a sulfur bottom calf can drink 50 gallons of its milk and gain 200lbs per day!

The largest individuals are estimated at being 150-200 tonnes.

Blue whales are light grey/blue to dark grey while at the surface, but seen underwater they’re a luminous aqua blue.

More about blue whales

blue whale

Southern baleen whale
Balaena glacialis

Average adult length 20m.
Average adult mass unknown, maximum of 96 tonnes.
A whalebone whale .

The name was given by the first whalers because they were the “right” whales to kill. they need large amounts of oil, blubber and baleen or whalebone, they’re slow swimming (easy to catch), are often found on the brink of shore and float when killed.

Right whales have an outsized bulbous head and lack the streamlined shape of other whales. the top has large callosities that are home to an entire colony of whale barnacles, parasitic worms and whale lice.

More about right Whales

Right whale

Southern baleen whale

Sei Whale
Balaenoptera borealis

Average human body length 16m.
Average body mass 13 tonnes.
A whalebone whale .

These are among the more elusive of the larger whales, not coming very on the brink of land at any time and not forming large groups or “schools”. Sei is pronounced “Say”

They are found like many whales in both Northern and Southern hemispheres following the simplest feeding at different times of year. Only the larger older individuals tend to travel very far south, they’re relatively rare in Antarctica.

Sei whales

Sei whale

Sei whales, mother and calf

Humpback Whale
Megaptera novaeangliae

Average human body length:
12.9 m (males) 13.7 m (females).
Average weight:
25 – 35 tonnes, maximum of around 48 tonnes.
A whalebone whale .

So called due to the habit of raising and bending the rear in preparation for a dive, accentuating the hump ahead of the fin .

Probably the simplest known of the massive whales as they often collect in groups almost land and draw attention to themselves by their behaviour. Breaching, lob-tailing and flipper-slap are common and sometimes occur several times during a row.

They are slow swimmers (allows tourist boats – and whalers – to urge close). Males at breeding time sing the longest and most complex songs within the Animalia .

Humpback whales

Humpback whale

Humpback whale underwater

Antarctic lesser rorqual
Balaenoptera bonaerensis

Average adult length 9m.
Average human body weight 7 tonnes.
A whalebone whale .

One of the littlest baleen or filter feeding whales. Minke numbers are still quite healthy thanks to whalers concentrating on larger, more profitable species.

Minkes are still looked for “scientific” reasons by Japan, and enormous quantities of the meat turns up in expensive restaurants.

Minke whales
Minke whale

Fin whale
Balaenoptera physalus

Average human body length 20m.
Average human body mass 50 tonnes.
A whalebone whale .

The second largest after the sulfur bottom , the fastest swimming of all the massive whales (sometimes called the greyhound of the seas) and therefore the commonest large whale.

Fin whales can produce sounds of 75-80dB at around 100Hz which is extremely loud for an animal source. In pre-propeller oceans this sound could travel for overflow 100 kilometres.

Fin whales

Fin whale – Greenland

Sperm whale
Physeter macrocephalus

Average human body length 16m.
Average human body mass 35 tonnes.
A whale .

The name comes from the big bulbous spermaceti organ within the head.

Only males are found in Antarctic waters. Sperm whales are toothed whales instead of filter feeders and are the deepest and longest of all whale divers catching architeuthis within the dark ocean depths.

Unlike baleen whales, which form only temporary bonds, sperm whales sleep in relatives units that for the females are lifelong associations.

Sperm whales

Sperm whale

Humpback whale underwater

Killer Whale – Orca
Orcinus orca

Average human body length males 9-10m, females 4.5-6m.
Adult weight: males 11.1 tonnes max. females 8.3 tonnes max.
A whale .

Also referred to as Orcas from their Latin name. they’re one among the foremost documented sorts of whales because of their being held captive in marine aquariums where they’re taught to perform tricks.

Killer whales are toothed whales and top carnivores in their organic phenomenon . Sometimes mentioned as “sea-wolves”, they often hunt in packs or “pods”. Their tastes are wide starting from krill and fish to penguins, seals and even much larger baleen whales.

Killer whales

Killer whale and calf, spyhopping

Whale statistics – these are very variable. If you are doing any research on whales on the web , or in books, you’ll find that there are wide differences within the recorded length and mass of the varied species. Lengths are generally more reliable than weights because it easier to live the length of a whale, from whalers records or from photographs against objects of known size. the load on the opposite hand is extremely difficult to live and is usually supported some rough measurements and estimates from those measurements of whales caught by whalers.

Unlike other animals it’s impossible to guide a whale onto a weigh bridge or to suspend it from a crane to live the load (or even take it to the whale-weigh station, arf!). the sole time whales are available in quantity for such statistics was during the old whaling days then it had been most vital to urge them processed as quickly as possible before subsequent one arrived, so weights are educated guesses at the best .

As well because the species detailed here, there also are another smaller and rarer species of Antarctic whales like the Southern bottle-nosed whale (up to 9.75m long), Arnoux’s toothed whale (to 7.5m) and therefore the southern hourglass dolphin, the littlest Cetacean in Antarctic waters at 1.5-2m long.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *