Gray Whales

From: Kim Marshall (
Date: Sat Mar 18 2000 - 14:41:39 EST

Dear Linda,

>Question # 1:
How much weight do gray whales lose during their annual migration? A. two
tons. b. six tons. c. eight tons and d. half. What
>would you think. I have spent a night and a half a day and I'm at a lost.
Reply: I have looked in several books for this answer and I can not find
it. I have listed some facts about blue whales that may help you quantify
an answer: A mature blue whales needs 1.5 million calories per day, 4 tons
of krill, diet - krill. In the summer they eat approx. 40 mill krill
daily/8000lb a day. Reaching lengths of 100ft or more, longer than 3 trains
cars or 30 elephants, weigh as much as 24 full grown elephants -150 tons,
their heart is the size of Volkswagen bug or big as horse, 5 yr old could
crawl through an artery, weighs 190 tons, dinosaur could fit into mouth,
190 gallons of blood- lungs of a blue whale can hold more air than a
bedroom, the tongue of blue whale weighs as much as more than a
Brontosauruses which could fit in its mouth easily. A baby blue calf,
average length 22 ft, 2 1/2 tons at birth, can gain 200 lbs per day, 8 lbs
hr, can drink 2.5 gallons of milk 50 times a day!
Question 2:>A gray whale mother and calf the best defense is to a. hide, b.
attack c.>cluster with others or d. flee.
Reply: Gray whale mothers are very protective of their calves. Their best
defence is birthing the calves in shallow lagoons like those found in
Mexico. Mothers with cavles tend to congregate together away from single
females and males. Even though they are very friendly towards humans, it
was said that mother whales would chase and attack whalers out of the

Question 3:Are gray whales:
>a. alone in their taxnomic family. b. found worldwide. c. almost
extinct. and d. all of the above.
Gray whales are baleen whales with features between the right and bowhead
whales and the rorquals (humpbacks, fin whales etc,). They can be found in
shallow coastal waters of the N. Pacific and Arctic Oceans. Although once
almost extinct gray whales have made a huge comeback, it is believed the
population is between 15-25,000 animals. They have the longest migration
route (round trip) of 12,000 miles.

I hope this helps you Linda! Please seach WhaleNet's pages for more
information on this subject.
Thanks! Kim

>Who knows maybe this might be on the Millionaire show one night and we'll
>have to right answer. Thanks a million.

Whale Conservation Institute/Ocean Alliance
191 Weston Road, Lincoln, MA
(781) 259-0423

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