Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Life of Common Minke Whale

Life of Sea | Common Minke Whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) | Common minke whale is a species of minke whales within the suborder of baleen whales. Common minke whales are widely distributed in the tropics and subtropics to the ice edge in both hemispheres. Although they also see the sea, Common minke whales are often seen in the coast and coastal waters. Minke whales are very rare in some tropical oceanic regions such as the eastern tropical Pacific. They come at least occasionally in the Mediterranean. They come at least occasionally in the Mediterranean. At least some populations migrate from high latitude summer feeding grounds to winter breeding grounds in lower latitudes. 

Minke whales are generally easily distinguished from the larger rorquals. The body is pretty tight. The head is pointed and V-shaped, seen both from the side and from above, and the median head ridge is very prominent. The dorsal fin is long (for a rorqual), recurved, and is about two thirds of the way back from the snout tip. The fins are narrow with pointed tips. The minke The coloring is distinctive. It is clark gray dorsally and white below, with stripes and / or lobes of intermediate colors on the sides. Some of the stripes may extend the ack behind the head. The most characteristic light marking is a brilliant white spot on each flipper, which varies in size between the dwarf and standard-form minke (the white is usually not present on Antarctic minke whales). This band is usually visible through the surface where the animals swim near the surface. The blow is often diffuse and is often not visible. 

When well seen, Common minke whales are among the easiest to distinguish the whales of the genus Balaenoptera, by a combination of their small size, the usual absence of a visible impact, a unique form of the head, and distinctive color patterns (especially the white flipper bands). The Antarctic minke whale overlaps the dwarf Minke in the distribution in the southern summer, and can be difficult to distinguish. The best way to distinguish them by the presence / absence of the white flipper patch (Antarctic minke whales generally do not have the patch). The Pygmy whale may also present problems of identification, but a good look at the head and the color pattern making accurate identifications. Sei and Bryde's whales, beaked whales and some may also be present confusion, but generally only if the animals are seen at a distance. 

Scientific classification
Kingdom:     Animalia
Phylum:     Chordata
Class:     Mammalia
Subclass:     Eutheria
Order:     Cetacea
Suborder:     Mysticeti
Family:     Balaenopteridae
Genus:     Balaenoptera
Species:     B. acutorostrata

Often times total for Common minke whales feeding in coastal waters and coastal cold temperate to polar seas. Group sizes are generally small (singles, pairs and trios), but larger groups of animals, the total diet on productive land. They are often separated by age, gender and / or reproductive class, and seem a complex social structure. Common minke whale do not fluke-up dive, but they do sometimes violated and perform other aerial behaviors. They often swim approach and stationary vessels. 

Common minke whales are newly whale usually taken by commercial and "scientific" whaling (at least in the northern hemisphere). It is still hunted by Norway in the North Atlantic and Japan and Korea in the North Pacific and Antarctica. Despite this exploitation, the common minke whale remains generally abundant in most areas of the range (more than 180,000 are thought to occur in the northern hemisphere, but accurate figures are difficult to obtain). Some are caught in fishing nets and suffer from ship strikes and habitat disturbance.

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