Click either choice below to hear the blue whale:
You may need headphones or external speakers on your computer to hear this particular sound
Sound © Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, Bioacoustics Research Program.
DescriptionThese bluish gray whales are the largest living mammals, reaching as long as 30.5 m (100 ft) and weighing 160 tons. Feeding mostly on krill with the use of baleen plates, these animals can consume four tons of krill per day during the peak summer feeding season! Blue whales are found along or offshore of the continental shelf in all parts of the ocean. Blue whales produce long, multi-part vocalizations that include long pulses, buzzes, and rasps. These vocalizations are typically in the 15-40 Hz range, often below the threshold of human hearing. Even though blue whale calls are generally the same, there are distinct geographic variations that might help scientists distinguish separate populations. Scientists currently use blue whale vocalizations to study their distribution. How blue whales use their vocalizations is not known for certain, but the calls could possibly aid in long-distance communication or navigation.