Humpback whales

Humpback whales

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Credit: ALEXIS ROSENFELD/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae). The mother (centre) is escorting her calf (upper right), which is a few weeks old. The fish seen at lower left are remoras, which feed on parasites and food scraps. Female humpback whales are larger than the male. Following a gestation of around 11 months, they give birth in tropical waters to young that are about 5 metres long. Males are not involved with postnatal development, it is the mother that teaches her off-spring by example, while it is suckled during its first 5 months. Photographed off the coast of Madagascar, Indian Ocean.

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Keywords: adult, animal, baleen, calf, commensal, commensalism, cow, diving, female, fish, humpback whale, indian ocean, infant, madagascar, mammal, marine, megaptera novaeangliae, mother, nature, ocean, remora, remoras, school, sea, shoal, submerged, sucker, suckerfish, swimming, underwater, water, whales, wildlife, young, zoology

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