Information About Blue Whales

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Los Angeles Whale Watching

Southern California Blue Whale Description

The Blue Whale is one of the many whales that you can see when you go whale watching in Los Angeles. Blue Whales, known scientifically as Balaenoptera musculous, have the distinction of being the largest mammal in the world. Blue Whales can get up to over 100 feet in length and weigh in excess of 150 tons making it even larger than the dinosaur. Blue Whales have a bluish gray color in their dorsal regions and a lighter color underneath. They are called blue whales because of the rich blue color they appear to be when in the water. Blue Whales have small dorsal fins that can only be seen when they are diving. They have two blowholes which are shielded by a splash guard. When breathing, Blue Whales blow a spout of water into the air which at times can almost reach 40 feet. When blue whales surface, they usually will take about four to five breaths and then deep dive, raising their tail in the air.

Southern California Blue Whale Population

Blue Whales were abundant in most of the oceans until the twentieth century. Because whaling, blue whales were hunted almost to the point where they became extinct. In 1966, they became protected by the international community. It is estimated that there are 5000 to 12,000 blue whales and while the population rises each year, it is still significantly lower than it was before whaling. Despite the increase in blue whale population, they are still listed as endangered species. Due to their massive size, Blue Whales do not have any natural predators. They do get injured and sometimes even killed by colliding with ships or getting tangled in fishing nets. Issues such as global warming can also have a detrimental effect on their food supplies.

Southern California Blue Whale Feeding Habits

The diet of a Blue Whale consists primarily of krill and lots of it. Whales can eat up to 40 million krill which equals about 8,000 pounds per day. To find the abundance of krill they need to sustain their 1.5 million calorie daily requirement, they will feed at depths of more than 300 feet during the day. When a blue whale feeds, they will dive for about 10 minutes although it is not unusual for dives to last up to 20 minutes. The blue whale lurches towards the krill, taking the food as well as a high volume of water into its mouth. They then squeeze the water through baleen plates which allows the water to escape but not the krill. Incidentally, they also will consume squid, small fish, crustaceans or other marine life which is unfortunate enough to get caught with the krill. Blue Whale calves feed on milk for about the first six months until they are weened. A blue whale calf can consume about 150 gallons of milk a day. The calf will double in length from 20 feet to over 40 feet.

Southern California Blue Whale Migratory Patterns

Blue Whales can be spotted in the southern California area from about June through October, although it is not unusual to see blue whales in the area in December. Blue Whale can reach speeds in excess of 30 mph for a short amount of time. However, when with other whales, they usually travel at about 12 mph. When they feed they slow to about 3 mph. Many times, blue whales travel alone or with one other companion. Unlike other baleen whales, they do not form close groups. If there is a large concentration of blue whales, it is probably because there is an abundant food source.

Los Angeles Whale Watching

The Blue Whale, because of their small numbers, is one of the hardest whales to view. However, we are very fortunate in southern California because there is a significant blue whale population in the area from June through October. Seeing one of these incredible creatures up close is truly a memorable experience. If you would like to go Blue Whale Watching in Los Angeles, give L.A. Waterfront Cruises a call at 424-242-0049 and to find out more information or to reserve a spot on one of our tours.

Los Angeles Whale Watching conducts whale and dolphin watching cruises seven days a week with tours at 12 p.m. and 3 p.m.  It is a good idea to arrive early as these cruises do fill up quickly.  Tours usually last from two to two and a half hours.  Ticket prices are as follows:

Individual Ticket Prices – Two Hour to 2 ½ Hour Cruise
Adults $35
Seniors (62 and over) $30
Children (11 and under) $25
Children (2 and under) FREE!

Ticket Prices for groups of 25 or more.
Adults $25
Seniors (62 and over) $20
Children (11 and under) $15
Children (2 and under) FREE!

You can order your tickets online by clicking the button, Click Here or calling 424-242-0049.  If you have a discount coupon, please present it at the ticket booth.

We look forward to seeing you and continuing to make Long Beach Whale Watching your choice for whale watching in Long Beach.  We offer convenient parking and are located near many area attractions such as The Aquarium of the Pacific, Long Beach Lighthouse and Queen Mary as well as excellent shopping and restaurant so you can make a day of it.  Whale watching is a wonderful experience regardless of age.  We can’t wait to provide the best whale watching in southern California experience possible.