Entries in Blue Whales (2)


Rare Blue Whale Sighting in Southern California

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(LOS ANGELES) -- Blue whales, thought to be the largest animals on earth, have been sighted feeding off the coast of Southern California — a rarity, given that they usually feed far below the water’s surface.

The whales, which are blue-gray in color and can be more than 100 feet long, were sighted off the coast of Laguna Niguel, according to ABC Los Angeles station KABC-TV. The station’s video shows a whale torpedoing through the water near the surface with its mouth wide open as it gulps down krill, the shrimp-like organisms it feeds on.

“They’re so close,” Larry Fukuhara of the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium in San Pedro told KABC, adding that they were only three miles off the coast. “A lot of times, what I hear on the East Coast you have to go miles and miles and miles. They’re relatively close, which I think is, once again, fabulous and fascinating.”

He said the whales usually dwell in deeper, colder waters where their food lives, but the cold water is closer to the surface right now. They could stay near Southern California for another month before migrating elsewhere.

The whales eat about 40 million krill a day during the summer months, which amounts to about 4 tons, according to the American Cetacean Society.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Blue Whales in Danger off California Shore

File photo. (Digital Vision/Thinkstock)(LOS ANGELES) -- They are the world’s biggest creatures and they are currently feeding in the path of some of the largest ships on the sea. Endangered blue whales are congregating near the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach to feast on an abundance of krill.

The whales’ dining spot is putting them in danger, increasing the likelihood that they could be hit by a passing ship.

“While this is a unique and exciting opportunity to have these animals out here, it also puts them at great risk,” John Calambokidis, co-founder of the Olympia, Wash.-based Cascadia Research Collective, told the Los Angeles Times.

In the last 10 years, dozens of whales have been injured or killed in the waters off California by ships, according to the paper. Scientists estimate that there are approximately 2,000 blue whales in the Pacific, a number they hope continues to increase.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio