Subject: WHALES

Tom Ford (tjfketos@devo.ultranet.com)
Thu, 12 Dec 96 23:32:48 -0500

These are questions from the children of mrs. Lloyds grade school class 
in Waynesburg, Ohio.


1) How do whales stay underwater so long?
    they store extra oxygen in their muscles. The oxygen is held in a 
special chemical called myoglobin. Myoglobin acts like a battery in the 
muscle in storing oxygen for use in the muscle while underwater.

2) What do whales say to each other ?
     Well, I do not know how to speak whale my guess is ,"Hey , Hi, How 
are you?

3) Do they like people and is the killer whale meaner than a shark ?
     Whales appear to tolerate people well. Killer whales are the baddest 
animals in the sea. They are more formidable than a shark because they 
move in a pod. A pod is a large family group of whales. They live and 
travel together always. Think of killer whales as a sea based wolf pack. 
No one should ever challenge a gang.

4) Where do humpback and killer whales come from ?
     Humpback and killer whales are found in every ocean in the world.

5) How big are whales ?
     The biggest whales are blue whales. The biggest recorded blue whale 
weighed 190 tons and was 27.6 M long or 90 and one half feet long. The 
smallest whales are harbor porpoises  they weigh as little as 80 lbs and 
just over three feet long. 

6)What do whales eat ?
     Whales with teeth eat fish. Whales with baleen eat krill and 
plankton or very small fish.

7) Why do they have a hole in their head ? 
     That is the blowhole. It is their nose. They breathe through it.

8)How many kinds of whale are there ?
    79 known species.

9) How big are dolphins and sharks ? 
      Dolphins are usually under eight feet long. Sharks can range from 
about one foot long to over fifty feet long depending on the species.
    
10) Are killer whales mean ?
    No.

11) How many Humpback whales are there ?
    Many thousands in every ocean all over the world.

12) How do they breathe underwater ?
    They do not breathe underwater . They hold their breath for a long 
time. Whales are much better at holding breath  than people will ever be.

13) How many dolphins are there ?
     Millions and millions of many species.

14) Is a killer whale a dolphin?  if so are dolphins whales?

    Killer whales are the largest dolphins. All dolphins are indeed small 
whales with teeth.

15)How old are whales ?
    whales as a group are at least 60 million years old. If you mean how 
old do whales get to be. whales seem to live about as long as people do , 
about 80 years.

16) Is Free Willy a killer whale ?
    Yes !!!  He is a killer whale (Orcinus orca).

17) Where do most whale live ? 
       Most whales live in the oceans. A very few whales live in rivers. 
They are small. Th e Chinese white flag dolphin (Lipotes vexifiller) used 
to live in Lake Tung Ting.

18) Are killer whales ever friendly ?
       YES!!!  Killer whales are very tolerant of people. i cannot tell 
you that killer whales are friendly. I only know that killer whale shave 
never attacked human beings.



                          Dr. Tom Ford