Nurse shark vs. whales food intake

From: Dagmar Fertl (dagmar_fertl@hotmail.com)
Date: Sun Mar 11 2001 - 22:02:22 EST


Hello,

> I need help getting started with this answer; nurse sharks and whales vary their food intake (more or less) depending on whether they are swimming in the warm waters of the Caribbean or the cold Maine waters. Where one would take in more in cold, the other takes in less. The same goes for the warm water, one eats less,the whale, and the nurse shark more. Can you help get me started with this one? Thanks.

**************

Hmmm. I assume you mean a migrating baleen whale, like a humpback or gray whale. They are in the summer in higher latitudes for a variety of possible reasons. It's better to have a calf in warm water (in winter), where it might actually survive without a blubber layer (as opposed to ice cold Arctic waters). The waters are more productive (larger amounts of food) during the summer up in the higher latitudes. This all has to do with oceanographic processes which would take too long to get into right here. I can't speak for sharks, since I am not a shark expert. Nurse sharks, as far as I'm aware, are only found in warm waters.

Hope this kind of helps you get started. I wouldn't want to take all the fun out of doing this assignment....

Dagmar



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