The blue whale is a type of marine mammal that can grow over 100 feet in length and weight about 200 tons. It is the largest animal that has ever been known to exist on Earth and is part of the baleen whale suborder. The diet of the blue whale mostly consists mostly of krill or small fish. In the beginning of the twentieth century, blue whales could be found in any of the oceans and were plentiful. Unfortunately, they have been hunted for forty years nearly down to extinction. They became a protected animal in 1966. In 2002, there is an estimated 5000-12,000 blue whales in existence. Before the occurrence of whaling, there was approximately 239,000 blue whales in the Antarctic alone.
The blue whale has a long and slender body. The head is a flat U-shape and contains a ridge that runs from its blowhole to the top of its upper lip. There are around 300 one-meter long plates that run from its upper jaw back into its mouth and 60-90 that run along the throat. These help the whale in excreting water from the mouth of a large feeding. The blue whale does possess a dorsal fin, but it is small and can only be seen during diving. It is located roughly three-quarters down the body and can vary in shape. When breaking the water’s surface to breathe, the bleu whale will blow out more water than any other whale that shoots between 9 and 12 meters high.