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Humpback Whale


Scientific Name:
Megaptera novaeangliae
Length:
13-14 m (43-46 ft)
Weight:
40,000 kg (44 tons)
Status:
good to go
Prey:
N/A

Physical characteristics

Black dorsal coloration and distinct hump. Unique tail with wavy trailing edges with black coloring on top and white underneath.

Behavioral characterization

Breeching

Distribution

All major oceans. In the North Pacific their summer range covers shelf waters from southern California to the Gulf of Alaska. Wintering grounds are off the coasts of Mexico and Central America, and around the Hawaiian Islands.

Population size

80,000 world-wide, 18,000-20,000 in North Pacific

Predators

Orcas and humans

Migration/Dispersal patterns

Migrate from their polar feeding grounds in the summer to tropical waters during the winter to give birth.

Social system/Group size

Live in loose knit groups in polar waters during the summer.

Major threats

Research efforts

N/A

Fun fact

Males engage in whale songs that can last up to 10-20 minutes but can be repeated for hours at a time. They have one of the longest mammalian migrations; can be up to 8,000 km (5,000 miles).