Humpback Whale (Megaptera novaeangliae)
Humpback whales are a favorite for whale watchers, as they frequently perform aerial displays, such as breaching or slapping the surface with their pectoral fins, tails or heads. They travel great distances during their seasonal migration, the farthest of any mammal. The longest recorded migration was 5,160 miles.
Size: Up to 53 tons and 62 feet long
Lifespan: 50 years
Diet: Krill, plankton and small fish such as anchovies and sardines
Distribution: They're found in all major oceans from the equator to sub-polar latitudes.
Journey to Monterey Bay: They usually migrate here from their breeding grounds off Costa Rica and Mexico. But this year, for the first time ever, some humpbacks have spent winter in California.
Did You Know?
● Only males sing.
● Humpback whales frequently perform aerial displays, such as breaching or slapping the surface with their pectoral fins, tails or heads.
● Humpbacks work as a team when hunting for schooling fish.
Animal facts courtesy of the BBC and the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Explore more at www.montereybayaquarium.org.