Bowhead whale

The baleen whale may be a my sticete whale, a taxonomic group of cetaceans characterized by rows of whalebone plates for feeding on being, a symmetrical bone and paired blowholes. The species is recognized by its giant bone (it represents a couple of third of its body length), and also the outstanding upturned jowl. There square measure 2 rows of regarding three hundred vertical whalebone plates, that at 300-450 cm square measure the most important of any whale. there's no fin.

With these giant heads and powerful bodies, baleen whale whales square measure capable of breaking through ocean ice a minimum of 20cms thick: Eskimo hunters in Alaska have reported  whales egress through 60cms of ice.

Size

Adult bowheads have a median length of fifteen to eighteen meters, with a particulary giant specimen reported  at nineteen.8 meters and over one hundred,000 kilogram in weight.

Colour

Adult bowheads square measure entirely black except the front a part of the jowl that is whitish. There square measure white patches on the belly and a area at the start of the tail.
bowhead whale / ©: B. Evans / WWF-Canada
© B. Evans / WWF-Canada
Priority species
Whales and dolphins square measure a priority species. WWF treats priority species together of the foremost ecologically, economically and/or culturally vital species on our planet. then we tend to square measure operating to make sure such species will live and thrive in their natural habitats.
Ecology & environs
Among the longest-lived animals on earth?
The species is actually found within the arctic region, in association with ice floes. Its movement patterns square measure so influenced by the melting and cooling of the ice. throughout the summer season it visits bays, straits, and estuaries.

Social Structure

Bowheads are reported  to stick in teams of up to fourteen animals in V-shape formation, whereas teams consisting of 2 adults and a calf additionally were seen to persist for a minimum of a couple of weeks.

Bowheads square measure typically solitary or in teams of 2 or 3 people, United Nations agency might mixture by age and sex. Larger teams is also shaped throughout migration; young specimens of the Bering Sea population move North initial throughout Spring migration, followed by giant males and females with calves.

Life Cycle

Because these whales don't have teeth - usually accustomed estimate age in alternative mammals - it is tough to work out their age. However, information has shown that baleen whale whales is also among the longest-lived animals on earth. supported the recovery of stone harpoon tips in their blubber, and from analysis of eye tissue, scientists believe that the life-span of baleen whale whales is over one hundred years. One individual in an exceedingly study was believed to be quite two hundred years recent.

Breeding

Bowheads typically reproduce within the late winter, with births occuring between April and June of the year once (13 months gestation). they furnish birth to one calf of four hundred to 500cm each three to six years, that weans half-dozen to twelve months later.

Diet

Bowheads filter their food through whalebone, gap their mouths and straining brute from the surface, the water column, or the ocean floor. brute includes copepods and tiny shrimp-like animals referred to as euphausiids. Scientists estimate that a bowhead has to eat regarding one hundred tonnes of crustaceans every year.

They maintain a thick layer of blubber that insulates them from the icy arctic waters. baleen whale whales usually congregate within the fall in areas with wealthy food resources. One such space is Isabella Bay close to Clyde watercourse, Nunavut, Canada, that WWF helps to preserve as a whale sanctuary

It is calculable there once were four distinct populations of bowheads. once the baleen whale became rare off Kalaallit Nunaat within the early 1700s, the searching focus shifted to the west of the island. Areas between Kalaallit Nunaat and japanese Canada additionally became overexploited by the mid-nineteenth century, followed by whales within the Bering Sea.

Current population and distribution

These whales square measure found within the waters of the ocean, the ocean of Okhotsk, sea and also the Gulf of St. Lawrence in Canada, and also the Vitus Bering, Chukchi, and Beaufort seas between Alaska and Russia.

They migrate at intervals these waters instead of moving seasonally to a lot of temperate waters like alternative nice whales. the actual fact that they keep within the Arctic year-around, moving between summer feeding and wintering areas, build bowheads one in all solely 3 whale species that pay their entire lives within the Arctic.

There square measure thought to be around ten,000 people of this species. but one hundred in all probability stay within the Svalbard-Barents ocean (Spitsbergen), a population classified as Critically vulnerable by the IUCN, and 150-200 within the Okhotsk ocean. alternative populations like the Bering-Chukchi-Beaufort stock and also the Davis Strait-Baffin Bay and Hudson Bay-Foxe Basin stocks square measure afraid by autochthonal folks in Canada and Russia.

Long-term observance efforts of the Bering-Chukchi-Beaufort population indicate that the population has been increasing within the Nineteen Eighties and early Nineteen Nineties, despite in progress searching. there's no data on alternative baleen whale population trends.

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