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Updated by Joanna James on Feb 11, 2018
Headline for 5 Types of Whales you can Spot in Sri Lanka – Enjoy the Mesmerizing Encounters
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Joanna James Joanna James
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5 Types of Whales you can Spot in Sri Lanka – Enjoy the Mesmerizing Encounters

The warm waters of the Indian Ocean surrounding Sri Lanka is a giant playground for the over 20 species of whales that traverse the surroundings. Listed below are five of the most impressive types.

1

The Largest of them all - Blue Whale

Belonging to the baleen whale family the blue whale is an endangered and protected species. Scientifically known as balaenoptera musculus this whale can weigh up to 170 tonnes and grow to lengths of 30 metres; even more impressive its tongue alone can be as heavy as an elephant. These stunning facts make the blue whale the largest mammal in the world. The blue whale is occasionally seen in groups although most whale watching Sri Lanka tours will encounter the animals in pairs; a very impressive sight to stumble upon. Don't forget the cameras!

2

Brydes Whale

The Brydes whale is a moderate sized mammal that can grow to lengths of 45 to 50 feet. It too belongs to the baleen whale family that includes the above mentioned blue whale and humpback whale. Expert guides from Walkers Tours will enlighten you more on these fascinating creature's characteristics as you encounter them. Mind you choose a tour provider that engages in responsible whale watching in order to preserve the delicate nature of these mammals easily disturbed by too much human interference. Keep your distance, stay quiet and enjoy the amazing sight of a whale bursting through the blue ocean; an encounter that's hard to forget.

3

Sperm Whale

The sperm whale is synonymous as the largest toothed predator whale. It grows to average lengths of about 52 metres and has the ability to dive to depths of 2250 metres in search of its favourite prey – squid. This mammal is credited with having the largest brain amongst all mammals; it is five times the weight of a human brain. The average lifespan of a sperm whale is recorded at 60 years. A marvellous sight to encounter this whale will always amaze its audience.

4

Fin Whale

Also called the Finback whale this mammal belongs to the sub-order of baleen whale types. Since it can grow to lengths of 89 feet it is considered the second largest amongst mammals; coming second to the blue whale. It is nicknamed the 'Greyhound of the sea' due to its slender body which resembles a smooth yacht and can weigh up to 74 tonnes. Don't let the girth of this animal fool you, it can easily outswim the fastest ocean steamer.

5

Killer Whale

The orincus orca or killer whale belongs to the dolphin family. This is a toothed whale that likes a diet of variety. The animal will feed on fish as well as larger marine animals that include smaller whales and pinnipeds. A very social species of whale they are lauded for their exceptional hunting techniques and very vocal behavioural techniques.

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