Sperm whale white
All rights reserved. Sperm whales' heads are filled with a mysterious substance called spermaceti. Scientists have yet to understand its function, but believe it may help the animal regulate its buoyancy. They have the largest brain of any creature known to have lived on Earth. Their heads also hold large quantities of a substance called spermaceti. Whalers once believed that the oily fluid was sperm, but scientists still do not understand the function of spermaceti.
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The inspiration for the white whale of Moby Dick, sperm whales have the largest heads, biggest brains, and make the loudest sound of any animal on Earth. Region: Arctic. Destinations: Lofoten, Greenland, Svalbard, Iceland. Sperm whales usually eat a little over kg almost 2, pounds of food per day. To find their prey preferably giant squid , they dive somewhere between and 1, metres and 4, feet , though they can go as deep as 2 km 1. An average dive lasts about an hour. When hunting smaller fish, sperm whale pods can work together to force feeder fish into ball-like clumps that are more substantial to eat than individuals.
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In this preliminary sketch for a large mural painting in the New Bedford Whaling Museum, painter and illustrator Richard Ellis portrayed Moby Dick in a shoal of sperm whales. ODHS The first was that it was an albino — a white whale. He was also unusually large, had a peculiar spout and was covered in the remains of broken harpoons from past encounters with whalers. Portrait of Amos Smalley, circa
The revenge of a whale or an accidental tragedy? A dramatic retelling of the story that inspired Herman Melville's classic novel will be hitting our screens on BBC One this Sunday - but do whales really attack humans intentionally? Sperm whales are relatively placid mammals and very few incidents in modern times suggest otherwise. They mainly feed on squid and rarely attack, apparently only when mistaking other mammals for seals or prey. In his book about the natural history of sperm whales, Thomas Beale, a surgeon aboard a whaleship, described them as "a most timid and inoffensive animal readily endeavouring to escape from the slightest thing which bears an unusual appearance".