This is a picture of a bowhead whale just northeast of Point Barrow, feeding on its side with its mouth wide open. The rostrum (or tip of the upper jaw) is noted and the tip of the lower jaw can be seen near the lower left of the image. The left eye and pectoral flipper are identified, and the baleen plates can be seen between the two jaws. Maximum baleen length is clearly less than maximum jaw opening.
Carroll, G.M., et al. 1987. Bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus) feeding near Point Barrow, Alaska, during the 1985 spring migration. Arctic 40(2):105-110.
Moore, S.E., et al. 1995. Bowhead whales along the Chukotka coast in autumn. Arctic 48(2):155-160.
Budge, S.M., et al. 2008. Blubber fatty acid composition of bowhead whales, Balaena mysticetus: Implications for diet assessment and ecosystem monitoring. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 359:40-46.
Koski, W.R. et al. 2008. Feeding by bowhead whales near an offshore seismic survey in the Beaufort Sea. Presented to the 60th International Whaling Commission.SC/60/E14.
Koski, W.R. et al. 2009. An update on feeding by bowhead whales near an offshore seismic survey in the central Beaufort Sea. Presented to the 61st International Whaling Commission.SC/61/BRG3.
Werth, A.J. 2012. Hydrodynamic and sensory factors governing response of copepods to simulated predation by balaenid whales. International Journal of Ecology DOI:10.1155/2012/208913.
Banner Photo: Bowheads feeding near Cooper Island, August 2016. Photo by Qulliuq Pebley.