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Beluga Whales

Beluga Whales are toothed whales.

Beluga Whale Classification:

Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Cetacea
Family: Monodontidae
Genus: Delphinapterus
Species: Leucas

Other Names: White Whale, Sea Canary, Belukha, White Porpoise and White Squidhound

Beluga Whale in Foreign Languages:

Mandarin: Baijing / Beiluka Jing
Danish: Hvidhval
Dutch: Beloega
Estonian: Valgevaal
Finnish: Maitovalas / Beluga
French: Beluga/ Belouga
German: Weibwal / Beluga
Greenlandic: Qilalugaq Qaqortaq
Hungarian: Beluga / Feher Delfin
Japanese: Shiroiruka
Navajo: Teeh Hoyaaniitsoh
Romanian: Beluga
Russian: Beluxa / Beluga
Spanish: Beluga

Beluga Whale

Conservation Status: Near Threatened / Threatened

Size: Male beluga whales tend to be larger than the females, the males measure 11.2-15.1 feet in length and weigh up to 3300 lbs. Female beluga whales measure 9.8 to 13.1 feet and weigh up to 2900 lbs.

Habitat: Beluga whales are found in arctic and subarctic waters. Beluga whales are primarily found off the coasts of Alaska, Canada, Greenland, and Russia. They prefer the cold shallow coastal waters.

Description: Belugas are often called white whales, their unusual coloring makes it easy to identify them from other whales. Beluga whales have rounded foreheads and they do not have the trademark dorsal fin, that is common on most whales.

Diet: Beluga whales eat more than 100 different kinds of sea creatures including: fish, crustaceans, octopus, squid, crabs, snails and worms. Beluga whales swallow their food whole.

Communication: Belugas are very vocal communicators, they communicate using a series of clicks, whistles, and clangs. Belugas also have the unique ability to mimic a variety of other sounds.

Did You Know?

Unlike many other whale species Beluga Whales do not display any aerial acrobatics. They do not leap or jump out of the water.

Gestation: Beluga whales carry their young for 14 to 15 months.

Birth: Beluga whale calves are 5.2 feet at birth, and weigh about 176 lbs. Beluga whale calves are dark gray to bluish or brownish gray at birth, their hide will lighten up by the age of 6. Beluga whales are able to swim at birth.

Sexually Mature: Female beluga whales become sexually mature between the ages of 4-7. Male beluga whales become sexually mature between 8-9 years of age. A single male beluga whale will mate with several females. Female beluga whales give birth to a single calf every two to three years.

Life Span: Beluga whales live an average of 35 to 50 years in the wild. Beluga whales are preyed on by polar bears and killer whales.

Did You Know?

Beluga whales will often migrate with bowhead whales.

Social Structure: Belugas are very social creatures, they live in small groups or pods. The pods can contain anywhere from 2-25 whale, a common pod average about 10 members. The pod will hunt and migrate together.

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