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Narwhal Whale
Characteristics
Scientific Name:
Monodon monoceros
Family Name:
Monodontidae
Size:
13 feet to 16 feet
Weight:
1 - 1.8 tons
Color:
bluish-gray with white blotches
Life Span:
bout 50 years
Diet:
fish, squid, shrimp, and other marine animals.
HOME >> WATER SPECIES >> WHALES >> Narwhal Whale


Narwhal Whale

Narwhal Whale Snapshot
 
 
 
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Narwhal Whale Description
 

The Narwhal (meaning "corpse whale" in Old Norse) is a rarely seen Arctic whale. This social whale is known for the VERY long tooth that males have. Very little is known about this whale.

All narwhals have two teeth in their upper jaw. After the first year of a male narwhal's life, its left tooth grows outward, spirally. This long, single tooth projects from its upper jaw and can grow to be 7-10 feet (2-3 m) long. Tusks are usually twisted in a counterclockwise direction and have a hollow interior. The tusk's function is uncertain, perhaps used as a formidable jousting weapon in courtship and dominance rivalry, in obtaining food, and/or for channeling and amplifying sonar pulses (which they emit). The tusk is not used in hunting. Long ago, narwhal sightings reinforced (or started) the unicorn legends.

 
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