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Beluga Whale

on March 31, 2007
Aquarium Guide - Mini

The beluga whale is known for its milky white skin. Young are gray or pinkish brown at birth but fade to white as they grow.

Beluga Whale

Design

About fifty percent of the beluga whale’s weight is fat, and its blubber is about 4 in (10 cm) thick. These features are possibly adaptations of the original created kind as it adjusted to the colder waters of the Arctic region. The area’s climate would have dramatically changed after the Ice Age that followed the global Flood.

Features

  • The beluga whale is known for its milky white skin. Young are gray or pinkish brown at birth but fade to white as they grow.
  • The beluga whale does not have a dorsal fin. This unique design feature allows it to swim near the water’s surface under the ice.
  • Its white color acts to camouflage it in its icy environment.
  • Males are larger than females.

Fun Facts

  • The beluga whale is also called the white whale or sea canary, due to its vocalizations.
  • Its melon (the fatty lump of tissue on its forhead) is very large and is used in echolocation. The beluga is able to change the shape of the melon by blowing air around its sinuses.
  • Belugas are very social animals and congregate in pods (social groups) of 2–25 whales. During migration several pods may join together, forming a group of more than 1,000 animals.
  • Mating occurs in the spring and young are born in the summer after a gestation period of 14 months.

CLASS: Mammalia (mammals)

ORDER: Cetacea (dolphins, porpoises, and whales)

FAMILY: Monodontidae (beluga and narwhal)

GENUS/SPECIES: Delphinapterus leucas

Size: 16 ft (5 m)

Weight: Average 2,975–3,300 lbs (1,350–1,500 kg)

Diet: Octopus, squid, crabs, shrimp, clams, and fish

Habitat: Arctic and sub-Arctic coastal waters of Canada, Alaska, Greenland, Norway, and Russia

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