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Modern-day #baleen whales are among the largest creatures that have ever lived. At 30 meters in length, an adult blue #whale weighs about 180 metric tons, almost twice the heft of the largest dinosaur known, and consumes about 3.6 metric tons of food each day. Baleen whales get their name from the frayed slabs of fingernail-like material they use to strain tiny crustaceans and small fish from mouthfuls of seawater. To nourish their great bulk, the whales have #evolved several anatomical features that allow them to slurp in great volumes of prey-laden water when they feed. Most species have a broad skull, which is key to a voluminous mouth. Moreover, the bones in the front part of a baleen whale's lower jaw, or mandible, aren't fused as they are in other #mammals. That feature allows the bones to rotate, broadening the lower jaw and thereby increasing the volume of seawater that can be taken in a single gulp (Sid Perkins, 2011).
Photo by @chelseamayerphotography
Post by @goje_casey