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January 16, 2019

Quite An Unusual Thing To See While Whale Watching

Whale is commonly used for various marine mammals of the order Cetacea. The term whale sometimes refers to all cetaceans, but more often it excludes dolphins and porpoises, which belong to the suborder Odontoceti (toothed whales).

This suborder includes the sperm whale, killer whale, pilot whale, and beluga whale.

The other Cetacean suborder, Mysticeti (baleen whales), comprises filter feeders that eat small organisms caught by straining seawater through a comb like structure found in the mouth called baleen.

This suborder includes the blue whale, the humpback whale, the bowhead whale and the minke whale. All cetaceans have forelimbs modified as fins, a tail with horizontal flukes, and nasal openings (known as blowholes) on top of the head.

Whales range in many different sizes from the blue whale, the largest animal known to have ever existed at 30 m and 180 tons, to pygmy species such as the pygmy sperm whale at 3.5 m.

Whales inhabit all the world’s oceans and number in the millions, with annual population growth rate estimates for various species ranging from 3% to 13%.

Whales are long-lived, humpback whales living for up to 77 years, while bowhead whales may live for over a century.

Whale Wearing Santa’s Hat

Santa Claus, often abbreviated Santa, is a figure in North American culture who reflects an amalgamation of the Dutch Sinterklaas, the English Father Christmas, and Christmas gift-bringers in other traditions. Santa Claus is said to bring gifts to the homes of good children during the late evening and overnight hours of Christmas Eve, December 24. Santa Claus in this contemporary understanding echoes aspects of hagiographical tales concerning the historical figure of gift-giver Saint Nicholas, the man from whom the name of Santa Claus derives and in whose honor Santa Claus may be referred to as Saint Nicholas or Saint Nick.
Santa Claus is generally depicted as a plump, jolly, white-bearded man wearing a red coat with white collar and cuffs, white-cuffed red trousers, and black leather belt and boots (images of him rarely have a beard with no moustache). This image became popular in the United States and Canada in the 19th century due to the significant influence of caricaturist and political cartoonist Thomas Nast.[3][4][5] This image has been maintained and reinforced through song, radio, television, children’s books and films. The North American depiction of Santa Claus as it developed in the 19th and 20th century in turn influenced the modern perceptions of Father Christmas, Sinterklaas and Saint Nicholas in European culture.
According to a tradition which can be traced to the 1820s, Santa Claus lives at the North Pole, with a large number of magical elves, and nine (originally eight) flying reindeer.


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