July 14, 2018
But do they get Hungry? Whales on migration.
If you are up to speed on one of our recent posts “Whale migration” you would be all across the reasons why whales migrate and converge in the cold Antarctic oceans..But that is where the food is.
The oceans around Antarctica are nutrient rich with millions of tonnes of krill- the primary food source of the Humpback Whale.
So if that is where all the food is.. Do they eat on the way?
Well, this is a very interesting question with Humpback whales fasting consuming very little food for up to 7 months. (I for one would be very very Hangry.).
” They may be the cows of the sea but certainly aren’t grazers!”
Whilst spending a great deal of time out on the water we have observed a few interesting things. Including.. some whales who appear to feed opportunistically when migrating lunge feeding and gulping down schools of pilchards in their large mouths.
There are also accounts of Humpbacks Whales doing this in Eden a few hours down the road from us http://edenwhalefestival.com.au/whales-feedin-at-eden/
How do they feed?
The way we are most familiar and know the most about is from lunge feeding, where whales ‘lunge’ across the surface to swallow krill and filter the water and krill with their baleen plates.
When this has been observed at Eden cool water from the ocean depths rises to the surface and uplifts nutrient rich water soaked with tiny krill and zoo plankton. Previously when this has been witnessed many different marine life come alive and feast together!