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Giants of the southern seas
The southern right whale (eubalaena australis) is a baleen whale species part of the balaenidae family in the southern hemisphere.
60 years male 14m
30 km / h
weight (=40 elephants)
adult 40 tn
at birth 2.5 tn
the hunting of these animals made them an endangered species. Since the nineteenth century, the original population was reduced by 90%. there are currently about 8000.
they produce offspring every three years on average which undermines their protection and only accounts for 3000 individuals, of which 20% have been recorded in Argentina jurisdiction.
How they breathe
Like all mammals, whales have lungs. It's theorized they were originally land animals that evolved and adapted to water.
Renewal of air to the lungs with each breath.
90% whale 10% human
expels a water stream 5m high in a "v" shape.
the life cycle
they breed in winter in warm waters. In summer, they feed in cold waters. they have a calf every three years.
Conception childbirth (one year)
jump could be for dislodging parasites.
projection caudal fin probably a form of communication.
this occurs when the whales are curious.
Live parasitic crustaceans called whale lice produce the white colored patches.
eye, ear and eyebrow
no dorsal fin
the color is usually black or dark brown
plump body and mottled
instead of teeth they have barbs used for filtering food from water.
the upper end is attached to the jaw.
the bottom is fringed to sift food.
during the feeding period weight increases up to 40%. the stored fat allows them to survive the winters.
scapula humerus ulna carpus radio pastern phalanges
jaw top (no teeth) skull the skeleton
lower jaw scapula thoracic limb
ventral spots are white, irregular and unrepeatable.
caudal fin: smooth edges, fine tips and a deep central notch.
comparison with man
the giants of the sea
southern right whale
its bone structure is very similar to other mammals, yet adapted for water.
where to see them
golfo san jose
golfo san matias
where they live
supposed to live among parallels 20 and 60.
pacific 20 atlantic indian
60 argentina south africa australia tasmania NZ
large banks of krill are their main food source. a whale can eat over 300 kilos per hour. food is usually found between the surface and 50 meters deep.
how they feed
1 they swim slowly and with their mouth open.
2 food enters with water.
3 the water is ejected through beards where the food is trapped
predation and its slow recovery
in this period they were hunted to near extinction.
in the peninsula valdes
the population doubles
every ten years. each
season grows 7%.
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