The largest living mammal on this planet is endangered. The blue whale, rarely seen, roams from the oceans of the north pole to the oceans of the south pole and everywhere in between. Blue whales weigh a whopping 20 tons which is about 33 elephants combined. At birth, a baby blue weigh can be about 25 feet long and by the time they mature they are 100 feet long. They usually swim at a sedate 3-10 miles an hour but are known to swim up to 30 miles an hour when they feel threatened.
Because of it’s size, this beautiful mammal has some of the biggest organs on Earth. A fully matured blue whale’s tongue can weigh about as much as an elephant (6000 lbs) and their hearts are literally the size of your average Volkswagon Beetle automobile which weigh about 3000 pounds. The blue whale also has the loudest call on Earth; 188 decibels. This is louder than a jet engine plane and can be heard by all manner of marine species 1,000 miles away. Turn your volume up and check out this snippet below. Truly mind blowing.
Even though these gentle giants are at the top of the food chain, their diet consists of 4 tons of krill each day. Baby calves drink 100 gallons of milk a day from their mamas and can gain 200 pounds a day! During migration periods, blue whales can go without eating for 4 months because they build huge fat reserves.
Blue whales became endangered due to serious whaling in the early 21st century. It has been estimated that over 200,000 blue whales have been killed leaving the population at about 5000 individuals left. Although whaling has been drastically reduced, blue whales are still at the mercy of climate change and getting caught in fishing nets because their migration path sometimes lands them in fisheries.
The people over at WWF have been placing satellite chips in blue whales they encounter in efforts to track their migration paths in order to establish protected areas that large vessels and fisheries can avoid.
If you find this information helpful and decide you would like to donate in some way, you can adopt a whale here.