“Look who visited our polar explorers: two humpback whales at once! They swam up to the shores of Galindez Island, where the station ‘Academician Vernadsky’ is located. This is quite a rarity as expedition members usually take a boat to meet whales. And here the explorers saw giant animals through the dining room windows during a breakfast,” the National Antarctic Scientific Center posted on Facebook.
As noted, whale biologist Oksana Savenko, a member of the 26th Ukrainian Antarctic Expedition, managed to "hunt" a tail fin of one of humpback whales. These whale fins have a unique pattern which resembles a human fingerprint and allows identifying each animal.
Humpback whales are the most abundant whale in the nearshore waters around the Antarctic Peninsula (where the Ukrainian station is located). Humpback whales grow to be about 13.5-14.5 m long, weighing 30 tons.
The 26th Ukrainian Antarctic Expedition arrived at the Ukrainian station “Academic Vernadsky” on April 17. Its members will spend there about 13 months.
Photo credit: facebook.com/AntarcticCenter
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