They featured prominently in Star Trek IV. They are 40 tons of sea life that have started coming closer to shore more and more over the last few years. Not only has this been a cause for concern as people may get hurt unintentionally by these mammoth beasts, but it has also caused many to want to know more about these intelligent creatures.
1. That’s a Lot of Food
Humpback whales might eat up to 3,000 pounds of food on any given day. Most of their diet is composed of small krill, which are a lot like shrimp. They’ve also been known to eat small fish from time to time.
2. A Beautiful Tune
Unlike other animals that sing, it is believed that humpback whales use song as a form of language. They learn the songs from each other and then they put their own twist, or dialect, into them based on their family pods. This is one way that the whales can distinguish individuals, sometimes over great distances.
3. Let’s Road Trip
Humpback whales are capable of an enormous amount of travel. There are family pods that have been down to migrate from the waters of the Pacific all the way down to the waters near Antarctica when in season. They prefer the warmer waters near the equator for giving birth, but once they baby whales are big enough, to the colder waters they will go.
4. Keep on Growing
Many animals reach their full size in a year or two, but that’s not true for humpback whales. The calves will stop feeding from their mothers after their first birthday, but they don’t actually stop growing until at least the age of 10.
5. Powerful in the Water
Humpback whales are known to breach, or “leap” out of the water, as they are swimming. That means there is 40 tons of whale coming up and out of the water when that happens. They can breach because of the size and strength of their fluke, which is their tail fin. We don’t even know why they decide to breach. Some think they do it to clean themselves, but others believe that they breach because it’s fun to do.
Humpback whales are one of the most remarkable creatures on the planet. Intelligent and curious, they might want to get to know you as much as you want to know these facts about them.