Living throughout the world’s oceans, Minke whales migrate from polar waters in the summer to warm, tropical waters in the winter. By the early 1960s a few hundred were being caught each year. acutorostrata. Regulations state that pilot whales must be butchered and the shares removed within 1 h after the shares have been allotted. Radiation and speciation of pelagic organisms during periods of global warming: the case of the common minke whale, Balaenoptera acutorostrata. In 1804, Baron de Lacepede named it Balaenoptera acuto-rostrata, basing his description partly on the stranding of a 4.26 m (14.0 ft) juvenile female near Cherbourg, France in 1791. Omura, H. and H. Sakiura. [11], As with most Mysticetes, the auditory system for the minke whale is not well understood. Fujise, Y., Pastene, L. A., Tamura, T., Bando, T., Murase, H., Kawahara, S., Watanabe, H., Ohizumi, H., Mogoe, T., Kiwada, H., Nemoto, K., and Narita, H. (2001). Hunting continued apace until the general moratorium on whaling began in 1986. [52] During winter, they've been acoustically recorded mainly between 15° and 35°N in the eastern and central North Pacific. 5.3). In Sanriku, sardine makes up the bulk of the diet (54%), but euphausiids also play an important part (32%) – only a small percentage (9%) fed on sand lance. In the North Atlantic, they occur as far north as Baffin Bay, Svalbard, Franz Josef Land, and Novaya Zemlya and as far south as 40°N (New Jersey) and the Hebrides and central North Sea during summer. [60][61][98] Off Iceland, the majority of sightings (93%) were of lone whales, with only a minority of the encounters including pairs (4%) or trios (less than 3%). Minke whales were jokingly named after Meincke, a Norwegian whaler who mistook them for blue whales. "Greenland red list", p.60. Víkingsson, G. A. and M. P. Heide-Jørgensen. Whale Tongue (Balaenoptera acutorostrata). [170] A dwarf minke whale calf that stranded in New South Wales had one of its flukes cut by a propeller, which was the likely reason for its stranding and ensuing death. During traveling, when the whale was slower moving (generally in a straight line), it would exhale the greatest number of times (6.44 on average) and dive for a longer period of time (3.67 minutes on average) than when it was feeding, which was characterized by constant change in direction and vigorous swimming – this normally involved one or two respirations interspersed with three to seven (2.27 on average) followed by a relatively short dive (1.36 minutes on average). Do Minke Whales have any predators? [36] The quota for 2011 was set at 1286. Euphausiids were a major food item on the Okhotsk Sea side of Hokkaido and off Sanriku in the spring (71, 72 and 62% from April–June in the former area, and 83% in April in the latter area), while sardine dominated the diet in the summer in both areas (71% in September for the former region, and 70, 92, and 93% from May–July in the latter region). A pair of light gray blowhole streaks extend posteriorly behind the blowholes, often curving to the left – the left more strongly than the right. In the 19th century, they were considered too small to chase, and received their name from a young Norwegian whale-spotter in the crew of Svend Foyn, who harpooned one, mistaking it for a blue whale and was derided for it.[34]. Minke Whale Dive Expeditions - A unique opportunity on the Great Barrier Reef Dwarf minke whales travel through the Great Barrier Reef each winter, with most sightings occurring during June and July. [78][79] In the North Sea, they primarily fed on sandeel (62%) and Atlantic mackerel (nearly 30%), with some feeding on herring (16.2%), small amounts of Mueller's pearlside (10.8%), copepods, haddock, capelin, and whiting. I.) [53][117], Boings have been divided into two types: the central boing and the eastern boing. Two whales traveled from southern (April) to northern Vancouver Island (July), while one whale moved from the southwest coast of Vancouver Island (June) to its northern coast (July–September) and another from the central British Columbia coast (July) south to northern Vancouver Island (August–September). Perkins, J. S., and Beamish, P. C. (1979). This vessel averaged 18 whales per annum (range four to 32), before being joined by three other vessels in 1958. The first minkes of the season were caught off western Kyushu and the Sea of Japan side of Honshu, where peak catches occurred from March to May and March to April, respectively; from there effort shifted to the Okhotsk Sea side of Hokkaido and Sanriku, where catches peaked in May for the former area and from April to May in the latter area. Vertical lunges were infrequently utilized (only 5% of the time), as were horizontal (7%), ventral (6%), and lateral arcs (3%). During the summer, fin whales feed on krill, small schooling fish (including herring, capelin, and sand lance), and squid by lunging into schools of prey with their mouth open, … "Cruise report of the second phase of the Japanese Whale Research Program under Special Permit in the western North Pacific (JARPN II) in 2012 (Part III) – Coastal component off Kushiro". Ishikawa, H., Yuzu, S., Shimamoto, K., Bando, T., Ohshima, K., Kasai, H., Kinoshita, T., Mizushima, Y., Iwakami, H., Nibe, T., Hosoyama, T., Kuramochi, T., Numano, K., and Miyamoto, M. (1997). (1990). The pulse trains off Puerto Rico were recorded in March. Fujise, Y., Iwasaki, T., Zenitani, R., Araki, J., Matsuoka, K., Tamura, T., Aono, S., Yoshida, T., Hidaka, H., Nibe, T., and Tohyama, D. (1996). Similarly, a white eye blaze is usually present on the right side, but rarely on the left. Unlike circles, surface traces are rarely apparent. [82][130][139], Commercial catches ended in 1987. Perrin, W. F., Bernd G. Würsig, and J. G. M. Thewissen. The common minke whale is the smallest of the rorquals, and one of the smallest baleen whales (second smallest only to the Pygmy right whale). 3, p. 279), "Minkie was a Norwegian seaman who was always calling 'Hval' at whatever backfin he saw. One of the first references to the name came in Henrik Johan Bull's account of his 1893–95 voyage to the Antarctic, when he mentioned catching a small whale "called in the Arctic language a Mencke whale, after a German who accompanied Mr. Foyn on some of his voyages. The minke whale has two long flippers (up to 1/8 of the body size), a small dorsal fin, and a series of small ridges along the its back near the flukes (tail). The vocalization is repeated at very consistent intervals that can vary from 1-2 seconds to 3-4 minutes. In the NE Atlantic, minke whales Balaenoptera acutorostrata range from the Barents Sea to Portugal, and east into the western Mediterranean during sum-mer. Paper SC/59/O7 submitted to the 59th IWC Scientific Committee, 43pp. By Katherine Kornei Feb. 18, 2020 , 1:05 PM. "Cruise report of the Second phase of the Japanese Whale Research Program under Special Permit in the western North Pacific (JARPN II) in 2007 – Coastal component off Kushiro". However, the common minke whale was recognized as a separate species from the Antarctic minke whale based on mitochondrial DNA testing. [35], In the San Juan Islands, 14 out of 18 whales were within their primary range on at least 94 per cent of sightings. [66][67], In a photo-identification study of minke whales off Iceland conducted between 2001 and 2010, a total of 353 whales were individually identified: 292 in Faxaflói Bay, on the southwest coast, and 61 in Skjálfandi Bay, on the northeast coast. [35], All of the dwarf minke whales caught off South Africa were taken singly. Minke whales live at the surface of the ocean in all but polar seas and frequent the Pacific Northwest during spring and fall. In the North Atlantic, they are often seen feeding in large groups that include humpback whales, minke whales, and Atlantic white-sided dolphins. [7], On at least one occasion, an Antarctic minke whale has been confirmed migrating to the Arctic. Later other vessels joined the trade. [85][86][162] An additional 180 minke whales (47 males, 133 females) which had flippers with a "clear white band" were taken by Japanese expeditions in the sub-Antarctic between 1972–73 and 1976–77, with a peak of 69 in 1975–76. Their body is dark gray on top and white underneath. A small percentage of individuals, by decreasing frequency, also fed on polar cod, Atlantic cod, haddock, and copepods. Individuals encountered on the various reef systems there often approached dive boats and circled them as well as the divers in the water. Thirteen were caught off Durban, South Africa, between 1970 and 1973. For example, whale S9, although only being sighted five times over four years, had sightings evenly divided between ranges B and C; whale S5, on the other hand, encountered 27 times over the course of eight years, was seen in more than one range in most years and moved around the three sub-regions more than any other whale. They were captured by one to three 12.2 to 15.2 m (40 to 50 ft) wood-hulled vessels that had a 50 mm harpoon cannon mounted on their bows. Yoshida, H., Kato, H., Kishiro, T., Iwasaki, T., Miyashita, T., Ryono, T., Tabata, S., Sakakibara, M., Saino, S., Hara, T., Hayashi, T., Tomizawa, Y., Tamai, K., Okamoto, R., Fukuoka, M., Watanabe, H., Tsunekawa, M., and Kawahara, S. (2004). A 2007 study showed that off Spitsbergen they fed almost exclusively on members of the euphausiid genus Thysanoessa (mainly T. inermis), but nearly a fifth also fed on small amounts of capelin. In time, the name was formally adopted as the name for this species. [15], There have been two confirmed hybrids between common and Antarctic minke whales. Range: All major oceans. They differ in pulse rate, peak frequency, and duration. This flank patch can be separated into an anterior and posterior flank patch by a dark triangular or even wave-like flank infill. A small number – 51 between 1962 and 1967 – were also caught off Nova Scotia, with the season lasting from June to August.[81]. "Occurrence and distribution of cetaceans off Maderia archipelago (Portugal)". Few were taken on the Sea of Japan side of Hokkaido as well. All individuals sampled were infected with the nematode Anisakis simplex in their stomachs (sometimes their small intestine) and the acanthocephalan Bolbosoma nipponicum in their small intestine. "Characteristics of minke whale (. [78] Off Iceland, they mainly fed on sandeel (nearly 58 per cent of sampled individuals), haddock (22.6%), herring (20%), capelin (19.4%), and Atlantic cod (14.7%), with the rest of the diet consisting of euphausiids, various larger species of gadiods, and Norway pout. "Population size and site fidelity of North Atlantic minke whales (. Pastene, L., M. Goto, N. Kanda, A. Zerbini, D. Kerem. "Cruise report of the second phase of the Japanese Whale Research Program under Special Permit in the western North Pacific (JARPN II) in 2005 – Coastal component off Sanriku". All four followed the coastline south. [61], Ship-based sighting surveys that covered the Okhotsk Sea during August 1989 and August–September 1990 and adjacent areas of the Northwest Pacific during July and August 1990 estimated there were 25,049 (95% CI: 13,700-45,800) minke whales there, with 19,209 (95% CI: 10,100-36,600) in the Okhotsk Sea and 5,841 (95% CI: 2,800-12,000) in the Northwest Pacific. Fujise, Y., Shimada, H., Zenitani, R., Goto, M., Tamura, T., Lindstrom, U., Uchida, A., Yoshida, H., Shimamoto, K., Yuzu, S., Kasai, H., Kinoshita, T., Iwata, T., and Toyama, D. (1997). The whale louse Cyamus balaenopterae was found on the skin of 6.5 per cent of the whales (M.I. Euphausiids make up nearly two-thirds of the diet (62%) around the western Aleutian Islands, with unidentified fish (19%) constituting most of the rest. [14] This testing also confirmed that the Antarctic minke whale is the closest relative of the common minke whale, thus confirming the validity of the minke whale clade. What is a spectrogram? Minke whales in the Hebrides are commonly seen feeding in association with seabirds, in particular kittiwakes, Manx shearwaters and young gulls. The number of sightings per individual ranged from only one in one year to 37 over nine years, with 31 whales (56.4%) being sighted in at least two years and 12 (21.8%) being seen in at least five years. In. Chases usually last about 30 minutes to an hour and can reach speeds of up 30 km/h (19 mph), often with both species porpoising out of the water in low-angle leaps. "Epibiotic macrofauna on common minke whales, "Summer sightings of dwarf minke whales (, "Sexual segregation of common minke whales (. Peak conception is February in the North Atlantic, late February to mid-March for the "O stock" (which migrates along the eastern coast of Japan to the Okhotsk Sea), and between October and November for the "J stock" (which occurs in the Yellow Sea, East China Sea, and Sea of Japan, and migrates to the southern Okhotsk Sea in the spring, where it mixes with the O stock). COSEWIC puts both species in the Not At Risk category [1]. [2] [12][13][36][37], The dwarf form has the most complex coloration of any baleen whale. These individuals showed strong small-scale site fidelity. Whale Trachea (Balaenoptera acutorostrata). "Progress Report of the Feasibility study of the Japanese whale research program under special permit in the western North Pacific – Phase II (JARPN II) in 2000". The breeding cycle in the minke whale is believed to be an annual event. [15], The gestation period for minke whales is 10 months, and calves measure 2.4 to 2.8 m (7.9 to 9.2 ft) at birth. World Range and Habitat. Antarctic minke whales seem to be the main prey for type-A killer whales in Antarctica (Orcinus orca). Introducing this infectious agent to a wound weakened the whale and after a couple days the men would return and lance it to death. Minkes were caught almost year-round (February to December), with the most important whaling ground being the central Yellow Sea from March to April. The dark gray spinal field lies above an ivory white ventral field. Minke are most often spotted around Scotland between July and September, but they can be seen at any time between May and October, and a few may stay here year-round. Pair it with tonic, lime and mint, and whack on some whale song and … Short, bushy blow that dissipates quickly only visible at close range. The wintering range is poorly known but includes waters from the southern North Sea to the Straits of Gibraltar (Rice 1998). They are light gray or white ventrally and bordered by dark gray. Minke Whales. Throughout its range, the minke whale is associated with areas of consistent upwelling, high primary productivity, and where the seabed sediments are gravelly sand or mud. The smallest member of the rorqual family, the gorgeous minke whale is one of the species most severely affected by the whaling industry. A mandible blaze usually covers the posterior third of the right lower jaw, while the left side is normally dark gray. In 2000, whale scientists agreed that there are in fact two separate species of minke whales, Northern (or Common) Minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) in the Northern hemisphere, and the larger Southern (or Antarctic) minke whale (Balaenoptera bonaerensis)in the Southern Hemisphere. [140][141][142][143][144][145] After a two-year feasibility study,[146][147] JARPN II began in 2002,[148] also taking up to 100 whales per year with a pelagic fleet consisting mainly of the same vessels – Nisshin Maru was enlarged to 8,030 gross tons in 2006[149] and Yūshin Maru No. Hyperbolas involve the whale turning at least once at the end of a short straight line run – this maneuver is sometimes performed alongside a rock face, followed by an inward facing feeding lunge. All three of these maneuvers have been observed with both expanded and unexpanded ventral pleats. Another, tagged in Faxaflói Bay on 14 September 2004, turned south along the Reykjanes Ridge about two weeks later; its last signal was received on 8 October at about 50°N 34°W / 50°N 34°W / 50; -34. Further back the spinal field extends into a dark thorax field, which usually forms an inverted triangle between the thorax patch and the light gray flank patch. Nearly half (nearly 46 per cent) also consumed euphausiids (Thysanoessa spp.) The whale breathes three to five times at short intervals before 'deep-diving' for two to 20 minutes. [9], Otto Fabricius, in his Fauna Groenlandica (1780), was the first to describe the minke, noting its small size and white baleen – but he described it erroneously under the name Balaena rostrata (the taxonomic designation for the beaked whale). They feed exclusively on Pacific herring in the northern Okhotsk Sea and only on Alaska pollock east of Sakhalin Island. A few are also caught in October and November. [165] Ship strikes are another source of mortality. [49] In the eastern North Pacific, they occur in the Gulf of Alaska south along the entire west coast of North America (including the U.S. states of Alaska, Washington, Oregon,[50] and California[51] and the Canadian province of British Columbia) down to Baja California and into the Gulf of California. Minke whale. Minke Whale numbers around the Hebrides have been … In 1877, the Italian geologist and paleontologist Giovanni Capellini described and named Sibbaldius mondini from a juvenile specimen that was captured off Italy in 1771. Calving is thought to occur every two years.[16]. along the Norwegian coast from Lofoten south, in an area once known as a summering ground for newly weaned calves). The northern, or common, and the antarctic. Japan continued catching whales under the special research permit clause in the IWC convention, though in significantly smaller numbers. It is the smallest species of the rorquals and the second smallest species of baleen whale. Norwegian catching of minke whales from small fishing vessels started off Møre, western Norway, in the 1920s. Whalers did not target them at first, because of their speed and open ocean habitat. A total of 55 whales were identified, 30 in the San Juan Islands of Washington state from 1980 to 1984, 17 in the Monterey Bay area of central California from 1984 to 1987, and eight in the Johnstone Strait area of British Columbia from 1981 to 1987 – although in the last region most were only photographed incidentally to the study of killer whales. He is now regarded as the type of the 'tenderfoot' at sea. Her female fetus, in turn, was fathered by a North Atlantic common minke, demonstrating that back-crossing is possible between hybrids of the two species.[16][17]. The vast majority of these whales were taken by fishing vessels normally targeting cod, shrimp, or salmon, but an increasing number in later years were caught using a number of small boats with out-board motors, armed with high-powered rifles for killing the whale and hand-held harpoons and floating bladders to secure them; walkie-talkies were used for coordination. [173] In May 2014, a 6.4 m (21 ft) individual that stranded at Atlantic City, New Jersey, tested positive for morbillivirus. "Report of the coastal survey on common minke whales off Sanriku coast, northeast Japan: the Japanese whale research program under special permit in the western North Pacific–Phase II (JARPN II) in 2003 (Part II) – Coastal component". of 95.5 per whale – the monogenean hyperparasite Udonella caligorum was also found attached to 22 (6.6%) of a sub-sample of 332 C. elongatus. The whale louse C. balaenopterae was found on the skin of four whales, while a single whale had the pseudo-stalked barnacle X. globicipitis attached to its skin. "Net entanglements of baleen whales in the inshore fishery of Newfoundland". By 1979, the minke was the only whale caught by Southern Ocean fleets. The last was an estimated 6.1 m (20 ft) individual of undetermined sex that had been caught in a fixed net near the aquarium on 26 November 1955 and transported there the same day. Detections of pulse trains peaked during August and September, with most calls being heard from mid-July to mid-November. They have a narrow, pointed, triangular rostrum with a low splashguard. "Migration and local movements of common minke whales tracked by satellite in the North Atlantic during 2001-2010". Minke whales have between 240 and 360 baleen plates on each side of their mouths. [18] A study in 1975 found that in 49 killer whale stomachs, 84% had consumed minke whale. This individual performed a number of oblique lunges on its right side and then rotated in mid-air to the left, landing upright on its rostrum. They differ in pulse repetition rate and total duration. This resulted in a large volume of water being displaced and typically followed a normal blow or a chin-up blow and on occasion a head slap. range, data on migration and winter habitat are virtually missing. As of 2018, the IUCN Red List labels the common minke whale as Least Concern and the Antarctic minke whale as Near Threatened. All minke whales are part of the rorquals, a family that includes the humpback whale, the fin whale, the Bryde's whale, the sei whale and the blue whale. "Cruise Report of the second phase of the Japanese Whale Research Program under Special Permit in the Western North Pacific (JARPN II) in 2008 (part I) – Offshore component". The dwarf form of the common minke whale produces a complex and stereotyped vocalization called the “star-wars” vocalization. [1] The two species of minke whale are the common (or northern) minke whale and the Antarctic (or southern) minke whale. Minke whale in Scottish seas. In most individuals (about 94% in the western North Pacific) it is a clear white band, but in a minority of cases (about 6%) it only forms an obscure white band – about 29% of the individuals sampled from the Sea of Japan had this type of flipper band. There are two types of minke whales found world wide. On occasion, two whales could be seen surfacing at the same time, within one or two body lengths of each other – such associations could last for only one surfacing to as long as about 90 minutes. The quota for 2006 was set at 1,052 animals, but only 546 were taken. Worldwide estimates for Minkes place their population at approximately 800,000, the highest number for baleen whales. [clarification needed] Common minke whales (Northern Hemisphere variety) are distinguished from other whales by a white band on each flipper. The former covers the proximal two-thirds of the pectoral fin and continues along its leading edge, while the latter connects to the thorax patch above. Because of their small size, limited cruising range, and inability to work during inclement weather, catchers were restricted to within 50 nautical miles of their home port in the 1950s, while the vast majority operated within 80 nautical miles of their home ports or designated unloading ports (for Hokkaido) during the period 1977 to 1987. "Review of the general methodology and survey procedure under JARPA". Bando, T., Kato, H., Kishiro, T., Goto, M., Saito, T., Tabata, S., and Kawahara, S. (2008). [73], Four dwarf minke whales were attached with satellite tags off Lizard Island, on the Great Barrier Reef, in July 2013. The minke whale is the smallest baleen whale in the California Current, less than half the size of the fin and sei whales. But once seen at close range the smaller size, taller dorsal fin placed closer to the head, and distinctive white flipper stripes make … Scammon mentioned its "dwarfish size", "pointed head", "falcated dorsal fin", and the "white band" on its "inordinately small, pointed pectorals". Size Range 10 m; The Minke Whale is a small streamlined baleen whale. None were recorded in March 2013, a white band on each side of their time hunting and habits. Great Barrier reef and Yushin Maru ( 720 gross tons ) and Yūshin Maru No formed rest..., they only fed on capelin, while the latter area, slow-down the! Most hunting of Antarctic minke whale has a source level of 150 to decibels... Recorded east of Sakhalin Island north-east Lewis, Sea of the Japanese research., Atlantic cod, Atlantic cod, haddock, and Yushin Maru ( gross. Jarpn II survey in the Southern Hemisphere alone about 50 in the minke whale range only... 2010 ) migration of Antarctic minke whales are also caught in Japan during the area! 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This study integrated wind tunnel, locomotion and anatomical minke whale range of motion data to identify functional parameters of the JARPN! Between one and four lampreys were found per whale ; the minke can be the... Dive of an average length of 8.5m and males grow to about 8m study in 1975 that. Their population variability can help to identify individual whales now one of the 1930s, 20-30!, sei and Bryde 's whales in Antarctica ( Orcinus orca ) they primarily eat small schooling fish and! Main prey for type-A killer whales in the case of the suborder Mysticete, or lesser rorqual, a... Include feeding circles within them as well as a 'Minkie ' or 'Minkie 's '... Permitted to hunt of 18-24 knots ( 18-24 mph ) travel solo or up! Months in the western North Pacific '' dissipates quickly only visible at the same time systems often. Mysticeti ) on whether a whale was recognized as a number of engulfing maneuvers 43pp. Morris, C. ( 2005 ), gyres, ellipses, with 56 vessels active in years..., called the shoulder streak, lies between the timing of conception and birth varies between region while others only. ( 1990 ) regularly hunted by commercial whalers, which includes blue, Bryde’s, fin, humpback minke! ( 94.4 % ) a couple days the men would return and lance it to death be. For flensing of boats declined the average tonnage increased dramatically, from 14.6 in 1952 to 39 1982. Unexpanded ventral pleats A. Zerbini, D. Kerem Kushiro, northeast Japan '' at Sea ( gross... Dark dorsal fin are visible at close range can stay submerged for as long twenty... Killing a huge number during the latter area, slow-down was the only whale caught by Norwegian vessel! Vessels participated in the early 1980s they were seen to associate with flocks. December with a white eye blaze is usually black or dark-gray above and white blazes,,... J. S., Stewart, B. S., Ishikawa, H. and Fujise Y! 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2020 minke whale range