whale

Tag archives for whale

Fin whales have coiled nerves

Fin whales have big mouths, really big mouths. When your meals consist of tiny krill, it is understandable why you would evolve the ability to stretch your mouth super-wide. With each meal comes a lot of water, which expands a pouch in the bottom of their mouths. As the pouch expands, all of the tissues in the pouch expand…

Professor Wayne Vogl and colleagues at the University of British Columbia discovered that rorqual whales can gulp volumes of water that are bigger than their body. Nerves in the mouth and tongue make this amazing feat possible as they can actually stretch to twice their resting length without sustaining damage. Dr. Vogl was quote in CBC News…

Rescuers have been successful in coaxing some of the stranded pilot whales to deeper waters in the Everglades National Park (Florida). However this success is still marred by tragedy as eleven animals are now confirmed dead. It is currently unclear why the whales beached themselves. Researchers are exploring many potential reasons including changing ocean currents…

In search of the loneliest whale

According to Discovery News, scientists and filmmakers are on the hunt for what people have called the Loneliest Whale in the World. In 1989 William Watkins (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution) discovered the vocalizations of a whale that were unlike that of any other whale. The vocalizations of the mystery whale were 52 Hertz whereas other whales…

Making perfume from whale barf

You may recall a prior blog in which I talked about the wonders of whale poo and a substance called ambergris that can be either defecated or regurgitated by whales and is used to make expensive perfumes. Well, my favorite comic strip, Piled Higher and Deeper (i.e. PhD Comics), posted a 2-minute thesis presented by…