Southern right whales

Southern right whales

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Credit: DOUG ALLAN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Southern right whales. Adult southern right whale (Eubalaena australis) with its calf (right). The southern right whale gained its name as it was the "right" whale to hunt. Females breed once every three years, giving birth in the temperate winter breeding grounds after a gestation of 12 months. The calf is born tail first and measures up to 6 metres (m) in length. A fully grown adult can grow up to 17m in length and weigh over 100 tonnes. The newborn calf is nursed on its mother's milk and weaned at about a year. The southern right whale feeds on plankton, which it gathers by swimming into plankton rich areas near the ocean floor. Photographed off the coast of Argentina.

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Keywords: 2, adult, animal, animals, balaena glacialis, black, calf, eubalaena australis, female, mammal, mammals, mother, nature, nursing, ocean, pair, parent, parenting, sea, southern right whales, submerged, two, underwater, water, whale, wildlife, young, zoology

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