Marine Mammals

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Some of the conservation efforts to save humpback whales include the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan, the Pacific Offshore Cetacean Take Reduction Plan, the Structure of Populations, Levels of Abundance and Status of Humpbacks project and the More North Atlantic Humpbacks project. In addition, safe boating practice education and humpback whale research and monitoring aid the effort to protect humpbacks.

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  • How long can dolphins hold their breath?

    Q: How long can dolphins hold their breath?

    A: According to the Institute for Marine Mammal studies, dolphins can generally hold their breath for as long as 10 minutes. They normally breathe about four to five times per minute.
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  • What do you call a baby whale?

    Q: What do you call a baby whale?

    A: A baby whale is a calf, his mother is a cow and his father is a bull, and together, the family is a pod. Baby whales grow in the mother's uterus from 10 to 18 months, depending on the species. A calf receives nutrients in utero through an umbilical cord.
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  • How do humpback whales protect themselves?

    Q: How do humpback whales protect themselves?

    A: The sheer size of a fully grown humpback whale dissuades all but the most aggressive sea predators from attacking them. In addition, whales typically swim in large groups called "pods" to protect smaller, weaker whales and youth. Mothers with calves swimming within a pod are accompanied by "escort" whales, which follow along slightly outside the pod to protect against aggression from competing humpback groups.
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  • What do Right whales eat?

    Q: What do Right whales eat?

    A: Right whales primarily feed upon zooplankton, a type of plankton consisting of mostly microscopic live animals. These include tiny crustaceans such as copepods and krill; pteropoda; free-swimming sea slugs and sea snails; and cyprid, which are the mobile larvae of barnacles.
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  • What is a killer whale's niche?

    Q: What is a killer whale's niche?

    A: The killer whale's niche is at the top of the ocean's food chain. Killer whales inhabit most oceans and are predators that have been known to attack other marine animals, such as sharks.
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  • What eats whales?

    Q: What eats whales?

    A: Killer whales, sharks and false killer whales eat whales. False killer whales and killer whales may hunt whales in packs. Humans are largely considered to be the primary predator of whales.
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  • How do manatees nurse their young?

    Q: How do manatees nurse their young?

    A: Manatees are large aquatic mammals that nurse their young with a nipple that is located underneath the female manatee's flippers on each side of the body; though these are mammals that breathe air, the calf nurses while submerged. Baby manatees, which are known as calves, will nurse very shortly after birth and will continue nursing for the duration of the time they spend with their mother, which is typically about a year. Though manatee calves nurse for a relatively long period, they also begin eating plants while still nursing, which typically happens when they are a few weeks old.
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  • What are some facts about sea otters?

    Q: What are some facts about sea otters?

    A: Sea otters are mammals that belong to the weasel family, have the densest fur of all animals and are a keystone species. As a keystone species, the sea otter is critical for the health and well-being of a great number of other species. They are the heaviest weasels and the second smallest marine mammals.
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  • What are baby whales called?

    Q: What are baby whales called?

    A: A baby whale is called a calf. Most whales give birth to a single calf at a time, but several instances have been recorded in which twin calves have been born in the wild.
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  • How do bottlenose dolphins reproduce?

    Q: How do bottlenose dolphins reproduce?

    A: The bottlenose dolphin reproduces through sexual copulation. The gestation period is 12 months. While twins do occur in bottlenose dolphin births, single calves are the most common. A calf remains with its mother from 18 months to 8 years following its birth.
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  • What are the predators of dolphins?

    Q: What are the predators of dolphins?

    A: Dolphins are close to the top of their food chain with few natural predators other than sharks. When faced by a predator, dolphins often circle, head butt or use their tails to hit the other animal in self defense. According to the Sarasota Dolphin Research Program, sharks often attack dolphins from behind or below as shown by bite scars.
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  • How many babies do dolphins have?

    Q: How many babies do dolphins have?

    A: Dolphins generally give birth to just one baby at a time, which is referred to as a calf. Unlike many animals, dolphins rarely have multiple births. After enduring a gestation period of 9 to 17 months, expectant dolphins part from their pod mates to deliver their offspring alone, typically near the surface of the surrounding water.
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  • Where do killer whales live?

    Q: Where do killer whales live?

    A: Killer whales live mostly in cool coastal waters. However, they can be found in most oceans across the globe. The least likely area to find them is in the middle of open warm areas, such as the Pacific Ocean.
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  • What do gray whales eat?

    Q: What do gray whales eat?

    A: Gray whales eat a wide variety of crustaceans, such as ghost shrimp and amphipods, along with many other organisms, including polychaete worms, herring eggs and animal larvae. They feed off the ocean bottom, sucking in a large amount of sediment, then forcing it out through their baleen plates. Food items are trapped in baleen filters and are scraped off by the whales' tongues to be digested.
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  • What sound does a seal make?

    Q: What sound does a seal make?

    A: A seal makes a sound that is a mixture of a bark and an eerie whaling sound, depending on the species of seal. Sea lions are known to bark whenever they come out of the water as they snort to clear their nostrils.
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  • How long have whales been on Earth?

    Q: How long have whales been on Earth?

    A: Fossil records show that the first whales lived approximately 50 million years ago, according to Encyclopedia Britannica. Primitive whales, belonging to the extinct suborder Archaeoceti, had features in common with land mammals and were the ancestors of today's baleen and toothed whales.
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  • What does a hippopotamus look like?

    Q: What does a hippopotamus look like?

    A: Hippopotamuses are large land animals characterized by their nearly hairless skin, wide snouts, and brown or grayish-purple skin. Hippopotamuses are the third-largest land mammals on Earth, weighing an average of 7,900 pounds and reaching approximate lengths of 15 feet.
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  • What do Weddell seals eat?

    Q: What do Weddell seals eat?

    A: Weddell seals prey upon fish, squid and octopus, prawns and crabs, although their diet may vary slightly based on seasonal changes, according to TravelWild. Their favorite fish species to prey on are emerald rock-cod and Antarctic silverfish. Weddell seals seem to eat their food underwater.
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  • What do otters eat?

    Q: What do otters eat?

    A: Most otters eat crayfish, crabs, fish, frogs and other aquatic invertebrates. The diet of otters varies, however, depends on the species, location of residence and availability of food sources. Small otters generally consume small mollusks, crayfish and crabs, while the largest species eat fish, frogs and even land mammals such as birds, rodents and rabbits.
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  • How long to baby otters stay with their mothers?

    Q: How long to baby otters stay with their mothers?

    A: Different otter species spend different amounts of time living with their mothers after birth. River otters stay with their mothers for about a year, usually long enough for her to become pregnant and deliver a new litter, while sea otter pups can remain dependent on their mothers for a period of five months to a year.
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  • How long can a whale hold its breath?

    Q: How long can a whale hold its breath?

    A: Although the amount of time that a whale can hold its breath varies by species, the beaked whale can hold its breath for up to 2 hours. The sperm whale can hold its breath for up to 90 minutes.
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