Blue Whale

Balenoptera musculus

Scientific Name: Balenoptera musculus

Other Names: Sibbald's Rorqual, Sulphur-bottom Whale.

Suborder: Mysteciti

Family: Balaenopteridae

The Blue Whale is the largest animal on the planet. Its body is streamlined with a long tailstock and generally a uniform mottled blue. Its dorsal fin is small and located three-quater way along its back. Unlike other rorquals, its head is approximately a quater of its body length with a large splash guard and is broad and U-shaped from above. There is some variation in size and colouration due to individual and geographic variation. 

Maximum Length 

Adult: 20-33.6m

Newborns: 6-7m 

Maximum Weight

Female: 380,000kg

Blue Whale Ecology

Range: Mainly cold waters but see in both temparate and tropical oceans

Usual Habitat: Open ocean and also inshore at the edge of continental shelves.

Usual group size: 1-2, rarely more outside feeding grounds where larger loose aggregations may occur.

Main Diet: Krill at depths of less than 100m.

Local population: Unknown

 Global range of the Blue Whale

Blue Whales are likely to be found in the dark blue areas

 Conservation Information 

Protection and Conservation Status

IUCN Conservation Status: 
Blue Whales are listed as "Endangered" on the IUCN red list.

SPAW Protocol:  Blue Whales are cetaceans, which are listed under Annex II of the SPAW protocol. As such they require total protection under article 11 of this protocol which prohibits the "taking, possession, killing and commercial trade of the species, their parts or products". The SPAW protocol was created to help with the implementation and promotion of the Ramsar Convention and the Convention on Biological Diversity. The Annexes of the SPAW protocol can be found here.

Local Laws: Cetaceans are protected under the Conservation of Wildlife Act of Trinidad and Tobago which offers protection to all species not listed under the second or third schedules of this act.
Reports of Blue Whales in Trinidad and Tobago

There are currently no reports of this species in Trinidad and Tobago.

The above information was obtained from the following sources:

We would like to thank the following people for the use of the art work and photographs:

  • Alësha Naranjit (Illustration of Blue Whale)

Make a Free Website with Yola.