sperm whaleLike humans, whales are mammals. They are related to dolphins and porpoises, all part of the cetacean family. There are two types of whales: baleen whales, which have “sieves” instead of teeth to filter their small food from the water, and toothed whales, that eat larger prey such as giant squid.

Moby Dick was modeled on an actual sperm whale named Mocha Dick. A male sperm whale can weigh over 120,000 pounds and be more than sixty feet long! Sperm whales can dive over a mile deep and stay underwater even for an hour.

Whales use “echolocation” to make their way around. The different species of whales all have different “songs.” Sperm whales make a clicking sound.

Hear the great variety of whale language and learn about the different whale species at Pacific Life Foundation resource site, Voices in the Sea, or the New Bedford Whaling Museum “cetaceans” page.