Fin whale

FWvortex.jpg

Photo Credit: Mike Nulty.

 Balaenoptera physalus | Observed: Throughout the year

The most common whales seen in Bahia de Los Angeles, fin whales are second only to the blue whale as the largest living animal on earth. Fin whales can reach a length of approximately 27 meters (89ft) and weigh up to 80 tons (160,000lbs). Most specimens observed in the Sea of Cortez average 19 - 24 meters long (62 - 79ft).

Coloration is brownish to grey dorsally (top), and white ventrally (bottom). Key identifying characteristics are an asymmetrical white coloration displayed in the right lower jaw and a light V-shaped "chevron" marking clearly prominent behind the blowholes.

Fin whales are lunge and filter feeders, feasting on krill, copepods, small squid, and small schooling fish. They can consume up to 1,800kg (4,000lbs) of food per day.

More often, they are seen in pairs, sometimes in larger groups. Fin whales are the fastest species of baleen whales, often referred to as the "greyhounds of the sea," attaining speeds of up to 46kmph (29mph) in short bursts.