was the whale's sperm, no doubt from its appearance, and the name stuck Finally, this article has done justice to answer the common question asked by so many people as to why a sperm whale is called a sperm whale? [129] In breeding grounds, codas are almost entirely produced by adult females. [36] The largest sperm whale weighed in piecemeal was 18.1 metres (59 ft) long and weighed 57 tonnes (56 long tons; 63 short tons). This was the whale oil, stored in casks for the long journey home. Nairaland - Copyright © 2005 - 2020 Oluwaseun Osewa. Relevance. [111] However, more recent work[94] has found many problems with this theory including the lack of anatomical structures for the actual heat exchange. Particularly massive sperm whale specimens have also proven willing (on rare occasions) to attack comparably sized whaleships. Initially, modern whaling activity focused on large baleen whales, but as these populations were taken, sperm whaling increased. diver examining one 3 feet in diameter, and he's almost completely inside [91][92][93][94][95][96][97][98] Some of the sound will reflect back into the spermaceti organ and back towards the front of the whale's nose, where it will be reflected through the spermaceti organ a third time. Sperm whales aren’t known to be social. [118] The genome of live whales can be examined by recovering shed skin. Each whale's head held up to a ton, in a cavity called the "case". By reducing the abundance of sperm whales in the Southern Ocean, whaling has resulted in an extra 2 million tonnes of carbon remaining in the atmosphere each year. Most of the sound energy is then reflected off the frontal sac at the cranium and into the melon, whose lens-like structure focuses it. [36][38][44] The whale that sank the Essex (one of the incidents behind Moby-Dick) was claimed to be 26 metres (85 ft). It was used in the production of candles, oil lamps, ointments, cream, fine wax, candles, and other industrial lubricants. They are known to be the third deepest diving mammals plunging to 2,250 meters (7,382 ft). He recognised four species in the genus Physeter. [27] The 1598 specimen was near Berkhey. Times News. [241] Whale ivory and bone were taken from beached whales. There are unique, coastal groups reported from various areas among the globe such as Scotland,[152] and Shiretoko Peninsula, off Kaikoura, in the Davao Gulf. Because whalers thought this stuff looked like whale sperm, they called it spermaceti and named the animal a sperm whale. According to early whalers, the head of the these whales contains the finest quality oil, and about 2000 liters of this oil lay in a huge sac known as the spermaceti organ. 1172–1174 in, Constantine, R. "Folklore and Legends", p. 449 in, "Sperm whale designated Connecticut state animal,", International Union for Conservation of Nature, Oxford University Museum of Natural History, Physiology of underwater diving § Marine mammals, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals, the Agreement on the Conservation of Cetaceans in the Black Sea, Mediterranean Sea and Contiguous Atlantic Area, the Memorandum of Understanding for the Conservation of Cetaceans and Their Habitats in the Pacific Islands Region, "First long-term behavioral records from Cuvier's beaked whales (, "Census of Marine Life – From the Edge of Darkness to the Black Abyss", "Sperm Whale "Voices" Used to Gauge Whales' Sizes", "A complete phylogeny of the whales, dolphins and even-toed hoofed mammals (Cetartiodactyla)", "Phylogenetic relationships of artiodactyls and cetaceans as deduced from the comparison of cytochrome b and 12S RNA mitochondrial sequences", "Relationships of Cetacea (Artiodactyla) Among Mammals: Increased Taxon Sampling Alters Interpretations of Key Fossils and Character Evolution", "List of Marine Mammal Species and Subspecies", "Sizing ocean giants: patterns of intraspecific size variation in marine megafauna", http://docs.niwa.co.nz/library/public/NIWAis76.pdf. The species is protected by the International Whaling Commission moratorium, and is listed as vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. What remained after the oil was extracted was a waxy substance that could be made into spermaceti candles. [159], An older study, examining whales captured by the New Zealand whaling fleet in the Cook Strait region, found a 1.69:1 ratio of squid to fish by weight. When dealing with a threat, sperm whales will use their huge head effectively as a battering ram. [219][220][221][222] Ambergris, a solid, waxy, flammable substance produced in the digestive system of sperm whales, was also sought as a fixative in perfumery. 11). My own experience with a pyrosome was with a smaller [172] This fertilises phytoplankton and other plants on the surface of the ocean and contributes to ocean productivity and the drawdown of atmospheric carbon. [153], Genetic analysis indicates that the world population of sperm whales originated in the Pacific Ocean from a population of about 10,000 animals around 100,000 years ago, when expanding ice caps blocked off their access to other seas.

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