The Sperm Whale
The sperm whale is one of the most spectacular and amazing creatures on
Earth. It is often written about and is featured in Disney's Pinochio and
the novel "Moby Dick." The sperm whale, (Cachalot) or Physeter
macrocephalus, tends to favor the deep sea and can be found 40 to
70 degrees north and south of the Equator. Males reach an average length
of 15.8 to 18.5 meters and females reach an average length of 10.9 to 12.0 meters.
Males tend to weigh 45 to 70 tons where females are smaller weighing 15
to 20 tons. They are dark grey or brownish grey in color and have paler
to white colorations at the front of the head and on the belly as well
as around the mouth. Sperm whales tend to have 20 to 25 large conical fuctional teeth
in the lower jaw and up to 10 frequently curved teeth in the upper jaw.
Sperm whales heads seem to be square-like and occupy at least one-third of the body.
They have a single blowhole that projects forward at a sharp angle to left. They have
no dorsal fin but a distinct triangular or rounded hump two-thirds of the way
along their body, following the spinal ridge to their broad triangular and deep
notched tail flukes. They favor the deep sea areas around the Aleutians in
North Pacific, New Zealand, Peru and Chile in the South Pacific, as well
as areas in the Atlantic, around South America, Europe and Asia for feeding
and breeding. The present estimated population is around 2 million.
Andrea Vanessa & Erica @ the Advanced Technologies Academy