Beluga Whales: the Canaries of the Sea

So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living thing with which the water teems and that moves about in it, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:21

Beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas), along with the narwhal, are one of the smallest species of whales. Belugas are known as “canaries of the sea” because of their frequent, high-pitched twitters.

Calves are usually born grey and turn to dark grey or blue-grey in one month. They gain their unique white coloration at the age of seven in the case of females and nine in the case of males.

Beluga Whales: the Canaries of the Sea

These white whales are toothed cetaceans and can grow between 4 to 6.1 meters (13 and 20 feet) in length and weigh between 2,000 and 3,000 pounds (907 to 1,361 kilograms). They have rounded foreheads that contain an organ used for echolocation called a “melon.”

They lack dorsal fins, which enable them to swim easily under floating ice. They also communicate through clicks, whistles, clangs, and squeaks and mimic sounds. They are highly sociable and live together in small groups known as pods, with an average of 10 members.

Belugas often expel big bursts of bubbles through their blowholes when they are startled, or in a spirit of companionship, or use it as a toy by swatting to change the bubble shapes and swimming through them.

Listen to the diverse and frequent vocalizations of the Beluga Whale, which uses them for echolocation and communicating with other individuals.

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