Fun facts about blue whales
FUN FACTS ABOUT BLUE WHALES
The Blue Whale is the largest animal that has ever lived, up to 33.3m/110ft and the heaviest 190 tons. Such a large animal can be difficult to comprehend, so here are some fun facts - enjoy! Feel welcome to contact me with any extra facts, or correct any I may have got wrong.
- A 160 metric ton Blue Whale is the equivalent of c60 Asian Elephants.
- But it can be quite difficult to see when it breaks the surface.
- The fluke (tail) is the width of a football goal.
- The tongue and heart are the size of a small car.
- The heart pumps around 10 tonnes of blood through a million miles of blood vessels.
- The call is one of the loudest sounds in the animal kingdom.
- The call reaching up to 188 decibels (jet c140 decibels, human shouting c70 decibels).
- It can eat up to 40 million krill a day.
- The daily intake of c1.5 million calories equals 5,500 snickers bars.
- Mouth can hold up to 90 metric tons of food and water, or about 420,560 big Macs.
- But any food has to squeeze through an oesophagus with a circumference less than a beach ball.
- The blow can be up to 12m/39ft and the blow hole is the size of a small child.
- The lung is around 5000, 1000x a human lung, and can inflate about 2000 balloons (so a Blue Whale is good to have a birthday party).
- And the 5000L of air in the lungs can be replaced in around 2 seconds.
- Gestation is c 11 months and the calf, born at c2.7 metric tons and 8m/25ft, is already one of the largest animals on the planet!
- The calf feeds on c600L of milk a day (imagine this delivered on your door step).
- On this full cream milk the calf gains about 200lb/91kg per day.
- There used to be 239,000 in the Southern Ocean alone.
- In 1930-31 30,000 Blue Whales were caught out of South Georgia.
- Numbers had been reduced to a few thousand but the mid 1980's.
- But the good news is they are slowly recovering.
- Good news for the animal with the longest penis - 2.4 to 3.0m (8 to 10ft).
And finally, most text books say the Blue Whale is named after the colour of the skin, but I believe they are all wrong! There are a few greyish blue whales, but most are bluish grey or just grey. But the colouration you see when the whale is just under the water is SKY BLUE and I think it is what the whaler's saw from the crow's nest when they saw the whale just below the surface!