A new scientific study has been conducted recently to justify the reason why the sizes of whales are huge. The giant size can be traced back to the abundance of prey and the ability of these largest mammals to search for food. Another reason has to do with their large bodies which help them to devour their prey efficiently.
According to the scientific journal “Science”, an old study deals with investigating the behavioral feathers of about 300 whales. Researchers make use of a novel strategy that utilizes remote sensing. They invented this method for the sake of tracking whales in the open ocean. In fact, using this smart technique, scientists managed to obtain notes of daily habits and whales’ food behavior.
Large sizes of whales and small preys
Whales that measure 27 meters in length and 100 tons in weight consume abundant quantities of marine organisms. Upon their death, all members of ecosystems feed on them at different layers.
These largest animals, for example, the blue whale, keep their sizes more huge and bigger only by consuming small prey. Scientists did not manage to solve this mystery.
The researchers state that the gained energy and consumed ones are responsible for the large size of whales. However, scientists divide whales into two categories in terms of their daily consumption. The first toothed type tracks large prey. Whereas, the second toothless type swallows small crustaceans.
Scientists believe that serrated whales are bigger in size; for their giant bodies enhance their vital sonar devices so as to dive deeper than larger prey; their relatives, which are toothless, possess huge size so as to adapt to handle the huge prey more efficiently. This type of whale investigates large areas of the seas and oceans to find such prey.
Using microprocessor technology, researchers chose cards endowed with sensors fastened to 300 whales in order to measure the feeding rates; body size; diets; information on prey; and the biomass size consumed by toothless whales.
The energy efficiency of whales
The results confirmed the trueness of the preceding hypotheses. In fact, the large size of whales enhances energy efficiency by enabling greater consumption and the ability to catch prey.
The researchers also noted that some serrated whales, whether large or small, sometimes feed on small prey. This is due to the lack of large prey. This indicates that when the whales dive deeply, their size becomes smaller. This is because of the absence of huge prey.
In contrast, researchers found that toothless whales that consume water have shown rapid augmentation in levels of their energy.
Researchers believe that feeding by filtering water can open a new path for small whale sizes. They become larger in the future by consuming huge amounts of small prey with great efficiency.