Whales Off Sri Lanka

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While observing sperm whales off the Sri Lankan coast, Philip Hoare came face to face with eight hunting orcas who had no fear of the 100-strong sperm whale pod

Thanks to Philip Hoare for this photo-documentary of his recent dive in our old neighborhood just south of the southern tip of India:

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Photograph: Andrew Sutton

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Photograph: Andrew Sutton

Sperm whales are supreme divers, jackknifing their muscular bodies down to spend up to two hours at depths of a mile or more, using their echo-locating clicks to find their favourite food – squid.

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Photograph: Andrew Sutton

A male peers at us, curiously. The vast head of a sperm whale contains spermaceti, once believed to be the animal’s semen. In fact, this oil has bio-acoustical amplification properties, enabling the whale to produce the loudest sounds of any animal. They also emit morse-like “codas”, and can communicate over tens of miles…

View the whole story here.

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