Antarctica

Endangered Animals

Humpback Whale

The humpback whale is a endangered species living in mostly every ocean around the world. It is one of the smaller whales, but its flippers are big and powerful. It communicates by making loud noises that echo through the water. Scientists have yet to discover what these noises mean. (NAT)

Humpback Whale: Hunting Technique

Description

The humpback whale is a mammal that is blue-black in color. Its skin is covered by fat and blubber; it can weigh up to 100 thousand pounds. The whale grows up to 46 feet long, as long as a school bus. You can recognize a humpback whale by the size of its flippers. (ED/NAT) The flippers are extraordinarily big compared to the whale's relatively small body. The reason that it is called a humpback whale is because of the "hump" the whale's back forms when it jumps out of the water. (ARK)

Food Chain

The humpback whale is an omnivore. It feeds on plankton floating in the water, using the gills on the body to filter the water and extract the plankton. Big schools of small fish may also come under their attack. Sometimes, it consumes ocean plants floating around. (NAT) The humpback whale are opportunistic feeders, which means that they attacks food sources on sight. It is a predator to many species but alas... it is unfortunate prey to humans. (ED)

Habitat

The humpback whale lives in the waters off Antarctica and the Pacific, Atlantic, and Bering seas. It sometimes migrates to warmer waters in the tropics to reproduce and spend the winter. It can live both in a harsh, airy, polar climate, and an warm and tropical climate. (ED) Generally, humpback whales are located near an abundant food source in the water. An ideal place to settle for the most part would be along the coastlines. (NAT and ED)

Adaptation

The humpback whale has adapted to its polar climate in the form of migration. In the harsh winter polar climate, the humpback whale (and its baby, if applicable) moves to the warmer tropical climates. Mating also occurs in the tropics. After the cold season passes, the whales can disband back to the colder regions again, where food is abundant. Physically, the humpback adapted to catching its food by having strong flippers almost 1/3 of their body size. (ED) A humpback whale communicates to others by "singing." These noises can travel long distances under the ocean. (NAT) Usually, a mother protects its calf by sticking by at its side until the calf is mature enough to go out on its own. (ED)

Reasons for Endangerment and Critical Information

The humpback whale benefits the marine food chain, but it is endangered due to hunting and whaling. (It provides a good source of oil, fat, and meat.) Other reasons for their death is getting accidentally tangled up in forgotten fishnets and coastline pollution. Their numbers has decreased throughout the past few centuries to only six thousand in the wild. To help the whales thrive, whaling has been banned by environmentalists, but sneaky poachers still fish for them. (AP/ED) We won't be able to control whaling, but the best we can do is to stop the amounts of garbage and pollution going into the oceans. Don't litter and recycle what can be recycled and you will be doing ALL the whales a big favor.
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Photo Credit


Baird, Mike. Humpback Whale Pectoral Fin. N.d.

Photograph. n.p. Web. 16 Apr 2013.

<http://www.flickr.com/photos/mikebaird/4842265843/>.


Dawes, Michael. Moreton Island 1205. N.d.

Photograph. n.p. Web. 16 Apr 2013.

<http://www.flickr.com/photos/tk_five_0/761208692/>.


Baleine-Whale. N.d. Photograph. n.p.

Web. 16 Apr 2013.

<http://www.flickr.com/photos/33062621@N00/69713643/>.

Humpback Family at Play. 2012. Photograph. n.p.

Web. 18 Apr 2013.

<http://www.flickr.com/photos/dittmars/8082004125/>.


Video Credit

n.a., . Humpback Whale: Hunting Technique. 2007. Video.

YoutubeWeb. 22 Apr 2013.

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vJvfjiCTvq4>.

Link to Partner's Poster Is below