Monday, February 22, 2016

Bubble Net Feeding

Humpback Whales typically migrate up to 25,000 km (16,000 mi) each year . It is one of the larger rorqual species, ranging in length from 12–16 m (39–52 ft) and weighing upwards of about 36,000 kg (79,000 lb). The Humpback is know for it's unique style of pod feeding called "bubble net feeding; a group of whales swims in a shrinking circle blowing bubbles below a school of prey. The shrinking ring of bubbles encircles the school and confines it in an ever-smaller cylinder. This ring can begin near 30 m (98 ft) in diameter and involve the cooperation of a dozen animals. Using a crittercam attached to a whale's back, researchers found that some whales blow the bubbles, some dive deeper to drive fish toward the surface, and others herd prey into the net by vocalizing. The whales then suddenly swim upward through the "net", mouths agape, swallowing thousands of fish in one gulp. Pleated grooves in the whale's mouth allow the creature to easily drain all the water initially taken in."

My Your Our Water