Baleen whales and toothed whales are two kinds of whales. Baleen whales eat plankton or krill, while toothed whales feed on fish, squid and crustaceans. When feeding, a baleen whale will swim with its mouth open in order to capture plankton and seawater by the ton. Then, shutting its mouth and pressing its tongue against the back of the baleen bristles, the whale forces the water out of its mouth, trapping the plankton. The toothed whale selects the food that it wants to eat and goes after it.
The humpback whale, one kind of whale, lives in all of the oceans. They are very distinctive. Researchers have learned to recognize their markings on their tail flukes. Humpback whales travel a great deal. During the summer months some humpbacks swim in the waters off the coast of New England and Canada where food is plentiful during the long summer days. Humpback whales move to warmer, calmer seas near the equator during the winter. This is where they will have their babies.
The blue whale is the largest of all animals. They are nearly 100 feet long and weigh more than 135 tons. The humpback whale is 52 feet long and weighs up to 60 tons. The grey whale can grow to be 46 feet long and weigh 39 tons.
If you should go on a whale watch, you might see a whale come up out of the water. They use the blowhole on the top of their head to let out a great cloud of air that the whale was holding under the water. Whales sometimes jump out of the water, this is called breaching. Whales are thought to be talking to each other when they wiggle or slap the water with their tail flukes or flippers. This is called fluking or lobtailing.