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Hidden cetacean finally filmed after years of searching! - video

A recording has been made of one of the most mysterious animals on earth – the stealth cetacean, also known as the Omura whale (Balaenoptera omurai). The animal, known to scientists since 2003, was tracked and filmed in waters near Madagascar after many years. “There have been many reports of sightings of secretive fin whales
Published: November 9, 2015 - 16:01
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 12:10
Hidden cetacean finally filmed after years of searching! – video

A recording has been made of one of the most mysterious animals on earth – the stealth cetacean, also known as the Omura whale (Balaenoptera omurai). The animal, known to scientists since 2003, was tracked and filmed in waters near Madagascar after many years.

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“There have been many reports of sightings of secretive fin whales in recent years, but not a single one has been documented. These cetaceans live in very remote parts of the sea from land and are difficult to spot because of their small size, plus they do not release fountains of water, ” explains Salvatore Cerchio, a marine biologist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

There is still a long list of questions about these mysterious animals. Until recently, they were thought to be juveniles of another species, the Bryde’s fin whale, mainly because they are not very large; an adult stealth cetacean reaches about 10 metres in length. Their size, as well as the fact that they communicate much more quietly than other individuals, has made them much more difficult to track.

The population discovered near Madagascar numbers about 25 individuals, but it is not possible to say clearly how many Omura whales live on our planet. Most probably, the east coast of Africa is where this whale breeds.

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Through research to date, it has been established that minke whales are closely related to blue whales, are grey in colour with a white spot on the jaw and a body covered with light and dark stripes, and that they feed on plankton.

Now the research team, which includes the aforementioned Salvatore Cerchio, will want to learn even more about this mysterious whalebone and determine whether it is in danger of extinction.

The stealth cetacean was first described just 12 years ago in 2003 by three Japanese researchers – Shiro Wada, Masayuki Oishi and Tadasu K. Yamada. Also at that time, their paper on the subject was published in the November issue of the journal Nature. For the next 3 years there was a debate whether the researchers were wrong to rely only on morphological features, but DNA tests in 2006 confirmed that it was a separate species.

Source: national-geographic.pl

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About author

Tomasz Andrukajtis
Editor-in-chief of the DIVERS24 portal and magazine. Responsible for obtaining, translating and developing content. He also supervises all publications. Achived his first diving certification – P1 CMAS, in 2000. Has a degree in journalism and social communication. In the diving industry since 2008.
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