Subject: Blue Whales

Peter Scheifele (scheifel@uconnvm.uconn.edu)
Fri, 30 Jan 1998 16:20:27 -0500

At 08:13 PM 1/28/98 EST, you wrote:
>These are some questions I want to find out about  the Blue Whale.
>
>1.What is the most dangerous thing Blue whales get killed by in the 1998
>season?
>
I'm not sure of an answer to this but some whaling occurred in 1997 and the
there are always natural predators.

>2.If you live near a tropical ocean and you spot a blue whale almost dying on
>the sandy beach who do you call and what do you do?\

You should call the nearest aquarium or wildlife/animal control facility, or
even police.  However, the first is the best facility to call.  Even a local
veterinarian is good.
>
>3.If a blue whale is trapped in a net what will it try to do to get out?

Blues are so big that the whale may not have a significant problem depending
on the situation.  My experience with smaller whales and dolphins is that
they struggle to get free [so they can breathe]  and many times make the
situation worse.
>
>4.What things are being done right now to make the blue whale not endangered?

There's a global effort to stop whaling and to study, track and protect the
whales.
>
>5.Where does the blue whale fit on the food chain?

In the grand oceanographic scheme, marine mammals in general are at or near
the top of the food chain.  Not being a toothed whale blues tend to eat a
lot of krill which are somewhat at the bottom or root of the chain.
>
>6.How do changes in nature efect the Blue Whale?

This si a question that most of us would like a clear answer to.
Unfortunately we don't have a good or complete one and the answer would
likely fill a book.  "Nature" is pretty dynamic.  If you consider that
whales are captive in the world's oceans then changes in temperature and
salinity, toxic additions, changes in carbon flow, iron, and other chemicals
can cause everything from altered migration and feeding to death.
>
>7.Does the Blue Whale react strongly to the changes in its envirement?

Depending upon what the "changes" are that you refer to yes, for things such
as toxic pollution, thermodynamic pollution, and noise pollution [possibly].
Many changes however, occur over a long time period and can be overcome.
>
>8.What enemies does the Blue whale have?

Orcas,and people>
>
Peter M. Scheifele
National Undersea Research Center
University of Connecticut
Bioacoustic Research
1084 Shennecossett Road
Groton,  CT  06340-6097
Voice:  (860) 405-9103
FAX:  (860) 445-2969
scheifel@uconnvm.uconn.edu