#Biodiversity150 number 88 of 150 Beluga Whale

88/150: Whale, hello there Belugas!

Animalia: Chordata: Mammalia: Artiodactyla: Cetacea: Monodontidae: Delphinapterus: Delphinapterus leucas (Pallas, 1776)

The beluga whale is an enigmatic species well known to the Canadian Arctic. It is also known as a sea canary because of its high-pitched chirping and can grow up to 20 ft in length and weigh more than a ton! They are social animals that travel in groups (of up to a 100 whales!) called pods where they use their chirping, clicking and whistle like noises to communicate which is more commonly known as echolocation. These whales also have a unique neck structure because their vertebrae aren’t fused to the head which allows them to move their heads independently from their body. They are carnivorous and mainly eat fish like salmon and herring as well as crustacean species such as crab and shrimp. The whales enjoy summering in Canadian waters and can reach migratory population sizes of 150,000 whales which make up 2/3 of their global population. Their biggest threat is climate change which is causing the swift shrinkage of sea ice that their habitats depend on! #Canada150 #Biodiversity150

Whale, hello there! Photo Credit: Steve Snodgrass goo.gl/yJ9zU6
Two courting beluga whales. Photo Credit: Brian Gratwicke goo.gl/LFmr3W

Here’s the barcode sequence information for this species:

Process ID:  ABMC074-05

nucleotide sequence


amino acid sequence


Visual representation of DNA barcode sequence for Beluga Whale

Learn more about it’s BIN (Barcode Index Number): BOLD:AAD4806

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