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Bowhead Whale Video Stock Footage
The bowhead whale has a large, robust, dark-coloured body and a white chin/lower jaw. The whale has a massive triangular skull, which it uses to break through the Arctic ice to breathe. Inuit hunters have reported bowheads surfacing through 60 cm (24 in) of ice. The bowhead also has a strongly bowed lower jaw and a narrow upper jaw. Its baleen is the longest of that of any whale, at 3 m (9.8 ft), and is used to strain tiny prey from the water. The bowhead whale has paired blowholes, at the highest point of the head, which can spout a blow 6.1 m (20 ft) high. The whale's blubber is the thickest of that of any animal, with a maximum of 43–50 cm (17–20 in). Unlike most cetaceans, the bowhead does not have a dorsal fin. Bowhead whales are comparable in size to the three species of right whales. According to whaling captain William Scoresby Jr., the longest bowhead he measured was 17.7 m (58 ft) long, while the longest measurement he had ever heard of was of a 20.4 m (67 ft) whale caught at Godhavn, Greenland, in early 1813. He also spoke of one, caught near Spitsbergen around 1800, that was allegedly nearly 21.3 m (70 ft) long. In 1850, an American vessel claimed to have caught a 24.54 m (80.5 ft) individual in the Western Arctic. It is questionable whether these lengths were actually measured. The longest reliably measured were a male of 16.2 m (53 ft) and a female of 18 m (59&...
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