Whale

whalesflukeflukeswhale anatomywhalingbreachcetacean mammalcetaceansCetusgreat whale
Whales are a widely distributed and diverse group of fully aquatic placental marine mammals.wikipedia
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Marine mammal

marine mammalssea mammalssea mammal
Whales are a widely distributed and diverse group of fully aquatic placental marine mammals.
They include animals such as seals, whales, manatees, sea otters and polar bears.

Hippopotamus

hippohipposhippopotami
Their closest living relatives are the hippopotamuses, having diverged about 40 million years ago.
Despite their physical resemblance to pigs and other terrestrial even-toed ungulates, the closest living relatives of the Hippopotamidae are cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises, etc.) from which they diverged about 55 million years ago.

Balaenidae

balaenidBalaenidae indet.balaenids
Whales consist of eight extant families: Balaenopteridae (the rorquals), Balaenidae (right whales), Cetotheriidae (the pygmy right whale), Eschrichtiidae (the grey whale), Monodontidae (belugas and narwhals), Physeteridae (the sperm whale), Kogiidae (the dwarf and pygmy sperm whale), and Ziphiidae (the beaked whales).
Balaenidae is a family of whales of the parvorder Mysticeti that contains two living genera: the right whales (genus Eubalaena), and in a separate genus, the closely related bowhead whale (genus Balaena).

Monodontidae

monodontidarctic whalesbeluga and narwhals
Whales consist of eight extant families: Balaenopteridae (the rorquals), Balaenidae (right whales), Cetotheriidae (the pygmy right whale), Eschrichtiidae (the grey whale), Monodontidae (belugas and narwhals), Physeteridae (the sperm whale), Kogiidae (the dwarf and pygmy sperm whale), and Ziphiidae (the beaked whales).
The cetacean family Monodontidae comprises two unusual whale species, the narwhal, in which the male has a long tusk, and the pure white beluga whale.

Plankton

planktonicnanoplanktonmicroplankton
Baleen whales have no teeth; instead they have plates of baleen, a fringe-like structure used to expel water while retaining the krill and plankton which they feed on. Cetaceans are divided into two parvorders: the largest parvorder, Mysticeti (baleen whales), is characterized by the presence of baleen, a sieve-like structure in the upper jaw made of keratin, which it uses to filter plankton, among others, from the water; Odontocetes (toothed whales) are characterized by bearing sharp teeth for hunting, as opposed to their counterparts' baleen.
They provide a crucial source of food to many small and large aquatic organisms, such as bivalves, fish and whales.

Humpback whale

MegapteraMegapterinaehumpback whales
Whales produce a great variety of vocalizations, notably the extended songs of the humpback whale.
The humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) is a species of baleen whale.

Whale watching

whale-watchingdolphin watchingwhale watchers
Whale watching has become a form of tourism around the world.
Whale watching is the practice of observing whales and dolphins (cetaceans) in their natural habitat.

Baleen whale

Mysticetibaleen whalesmysticete
The two parvorders of whales, baleen whales (Mysticeti) and toothed whales (Odontoceti), are thought to have split apart around 34 million years ago. Cetaceans are divided into two parvorders: the largest parvorder, Mysticeti (baleen whales), is characterized by the presence of baleen, a sieve-like structure in the upper jaw made of keratin, which it uses to filter plankton, among others, from the water; Odontocetes (toothed whales) are characterized by bearing sharp teeth for hunting, as opposed to their counterparts' baleen.
Baleen whales (systematic name Mysticeti), known earlier as whalebone whales, form a parvorder of the infraorder Cetacea (whales, dolphins and porpoises).

Toothed whale

Odontocetitoothed whalesodontocete
The two parvorders of whales, baleen whales (Mysticeti) and toothed whales (Odontoceti), are thought to have split apart around 34 million years ago. Cetaceans are divided into two parvorders: the largest parvorder, Mysticeti (baleen whales), is characterized by the presence of baleen, a sieve-like structure in the upper jaw made of keratin, which it uses to filter plankton, among others, from the water; Odontocetes (toothed whales) are characterized by bearing sharp teeth for hunting, as opposed to their counterparts' baleen.
The toothed whales (systematic name Odontoceti) are a parvorder of cetaceans that includes dolphins, porpoises, and all other whales possessing teeth, such as the beaked whales and sperm whales.

Even-toed ungulate

artiodactyleven-toed ungulatesCetartiodactyla
Whales, dolphins and porpoises belong to the order Cetartiodactyla, which consists of even-toed ungulates.
The aquatic cetaceans (whales, dolphins, and porpoises) evolved from even-toed ungulates, so modern taxonomic classification sometimes combines the Artiodactyla and Cetacea into the Cetartiodactyla.

Blubber

whale blubberfatinsulating body fat
They are warm-blooded, and have a layer of fat, or blubber, under the skin.
Blubber may save energy for marine mammals, such as dolphins, in that it adds buoyancy while swimming.

Narwhal

MonodonnarwhalsMonodon monoceros
Monodontids consist of two species: the beluga and the narwhal.
It is one of two living species of whale in the family Monodontidae, along with the beluga whale.

Cetacea

cetaceancetaceanswhales
They are an informal grouping within the infraorder Cetacea, usually excluding dolphins and porpoises.

Porpoise

PhocoenidaeporpoisesPhocoenidae indet.
They are an informal grouping within the infraorder Cetacea, usually excluding dolphins and porpoises.
Porpoises, along with whales and dolphins, are descendants of land-living ungulates (hoofed animals) that first entered the oceans around 50 million years ago (Mya).

Keratin

keratinizationkeratinouskeratinized
Cetaceans are divided into two parvorders: the largest parvorder, Mysticeti (baleen whales), is characterized by the presence of baleen, a sieve-like structure in the upper jaw made of keratin, which it uses to filter plankton, among others, from the water; Odontocetes (toothed whales) are characterized by bearing sharp teeth for hunting, as opposed to their counterparts' baleen.
Additionally, the baleen plates of filter-feeding whales are made of keratin.

Ambulocetus

Ambulocetus natans
Major anatomical changes included their hearing set-up that channeled vibrations from the jaw to the earbone (Ambulocetus 49 mya), a streamlined body and the growth of flukes on the tail (Protocetus 43 mya), the migration of the nostrils toward the top of the cranium (blowholes), and the modification of the forelimbs into flippers (Basilosaurus 35 mya), and the shrinking and eventual disappearance of the hind limbs (the first odontocetes and mysticetes 34 mya).
Along with other members of Ambulocetidae, it is a transitional fossil that shows how whales evolved from land-living mammals.

Placentalia

placentalplacental mammalplacental mammals
Whales are a widely distributed and diverse group of fully aquatic placental marine mammals.

Oceanic dolphin

DelphinidaedolphinDelphinid
Six species of dolphins have the word "whale" in their name, collectively known as blackfish: the killer whale, the melon-headed whale, the pygmy killer whale, the false killer whale, and the two species of pilot whales, all of which are classified under the family Delphinidae (oceanic dolphins).
Killer whales on occasion also hunt whales larger than themselves.

Dorsal fin

dorsaldorsal finspterygiophore
Most species have a dorsal fin.
A dorsal fin is a fin located on the back of most marine and freshwater vertebrates such as fishes, cetaceans (whales, dolphins, and porpoises), and the (extinct) ichthyosaur.

Whale feces

whale pumpWhales defecatedefecate a liquid
Whales defecate at the ocean's surface; their excrement is important for fisheries because it is rich in iron and nitrogen.
Whale feces, the excrement of whales, has a significant role in the ecology of the oceans, and whales have been referred to as "marine ecosystem engineers".

Sea

maritimemarineat sea
Their features became adapted for living in the marine environment.
The zooplankton feed on phytoplankton and on each other and form a basic part of the complex food chain that extends through variously sized fish and other nektonic organisms to large squid, sharks, porpoises, dolphins and whales.

Whaling

whalerswhalerwhale hunting
Whaling by humans has existed since the Stone Age.
Whaling is the hunting of whales for their usable products such as meat and blubber, which can be turned into a type of oil which became increasingly important in the Industrial Revolution.

Whale meat

meatwhaletheir meat
People from Norway and Japan started hunting whales around 2000 B.C. Whales are typically hunted for their meat and blubber by aboriginal groups; they used baleen for baskets or roofing, and made tools and masks out of bones.
Whale meat, broadly speaking, may include all cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises) and all parts of the animal: muscle (meat), organs (offal), and fat (blubber).

Whale oil

oiltrain oilsperm oil
18th- and 19th-century whalers hunted whales mainly for their oil, which was used as lamp fuel and a lubricant, baleen or whalebone, which was used for items such as corsets and skirt hoops, and ambergris, which was used as a fixative for perfumes.
Whale oil is oil obtained from the blubber of whales.

Marine mammals and sonar

sonaracoustic pollutionactive sonar
Advanced military sonar harms whales.
Some marine animals, such as whales and dolphins, use echolocation or "biosonar" systems to locate predators and prey.