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North American Animals - mamals, birds, reptiles, insects
Northern Minke Whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata)
Minke spotted south of Armadale Skye in Sound of Sleat, Scotland
Photograph by Bob Balmer. Some rights reserved. (view image details)
Minke Whale surfacing, north of Husavik, Iceland
Photograph by Ville Miettinen. Some rights reserved. (view image details)
NORTHERN MINKE WHALE FACTSDescription
The Minke Whale is a small rorqual with a pointed head and relatively small rostrum (snout). The body is dark with paler grey on the lower flanks and underside. There are usually pale chevron markings behind the head. The flipper has a white band across the middle of the dorsal side, but this is difficult to see in the water. They have about 300 yellowish baleen plates on each side of the mouth. The underside has between 50-70 ventral grooves. The dorsal fin is tall and sickle shaped.
length: to 10m long. Weight: 6000kg - 9000kg. Females are larger than males
Minke whales are usually found within 170km on land. They are often seen in estuaries, bays, fjords, and lagoons. They are found as far north as the polar ice fields.
feeds primarily on krill and some small fish
A single calf is born after a gestation period of 10 to 11 months. The calf weighs about 450 kg at birth. The young are weaned at 5 months
Northern Minke whales are found in all oceans of the northern hemisphere. They prefer cooler waters to tropical waters.
Relatives in same Genus
Sei Whale (B. borealis)
Bryde's Whale (B. edeni)
Blue Whale (B. musculus)
Fin Whale (B. physalus)