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A

 

Acute : Pointed.

Adult : A sexually mature animal which is (or is almost) fully grown.

Amphipod : A small, shrimp-like crustacean that is a food source for many whales

Anchor patch : A variable grey-white anchor- or 'W'-shaped patch on the chests of some smaller cetaceans.

Anterior : Located toward the front.

 

B

Baleen/Baleen plates : In some whales, the fibrous plates in parallel rows on either side of the upper jaw used to filter small prey from the water.

Baleen Whale : A suborder of whales with baleen plates instead of teeth, members of the Mysticeti suborder.

Band : A pigmented diagonal or oblique line.

Bar : A short, broad, pigmented vertical line.

Barbel : A fleshy projection of skin, often threadlike, usually found near the mouth, chin, or nostrils.

Beach-rubbing : Rubbing the body on stones in shallow water near to the shore.

Beak : In many toothed whales, the elongated forward portion of the head, consisting of the rostrum and the lower jaw.

Benthic : Living on or associated with the ocean bottom.

Blaze : In cetaceans, a streak or "smear" of light pigmentation on the upper side of the front portion of the body.

Blow : In cetaceans, the expulsion of air at the surface through the blowhole(s), or nostril(s), during exhalation; also called the spout.

Blowhole : In cetaceans, the single or paired respiratory opening.

Blowhole crest : An elevated area in front of the blowholes of many large whales, which prevents water from pouring in during respiration.

Blubber : An insulating layer of fat beneath the skin of most marine mammals

Bow-riding : Riding on the pressure wave in front of a ship or large whale.

Brackish Water : Slightly less salty than sea water.

Breach : To leap through the water surface. -- Breaching - The act of leaping out of the water and crashing back with a splash.

Bulbous : Rounded; resembling a bulb in shape.

Bull : Adult male cetacean.

 

C

Calf : A baby cetacean that is still being nursed by its mother.

Callosity : An area of roughened skin or horny growth on the head of a Right Whale.

Cape : In some cetaceans; a dark area usually on top of the head or on the back in front of the dorsal fin.

Cardiform Teeth : Sharp teeth that are closely set in rows and look like the bristles of a brush.

Caudal : Petaining to the tail.

Caudal Fin : The fin on the hindmost part of the body.

Cephalic : Pertaining to the head.

Cetacean : A marine mammal belonging to the Latin order Cetacea, which includes all whales, dolphins and porpoises.

Circumpolar : Ranging around either pole.

Compressed : Flattened from side to side so that the animal is higher than wide.

Continental Shelf : The submerged, relatively flat and gently sloping part of a continent extending from shore to about 100 fathoms.

Cow : Adult female cetacean.

Cusp : A pointed projection on a tooth.