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YOU can help protect your national parks!

Help us reach our $401,000 goal by 12/31 so we can start 2015 strong defending them.

The national parks are yours.

Make your year-end, tax-deductible contribution to protect them today!

YOU can help protect your national parks!

Help us reach our $401,000 goal by 12/31 so we can start 2015 strong defending them.

The national parks are yours.

Make your year-end, tax-deductible contribution to protect them today!

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Photo: National Park Service

Humpback Whale

(Megaptera novaeangliae)

Humpback Whale

Factoid:

A humpback consumes between 2,000 and 9,000 pounds of fish and krill a day.

Status:

Endangered

Population: According to NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service, it is estimated that there are approximately 30,000 humpback whales worldwide.

Threats:

Humpbacks are targeted by illegal whalers, sometimes become entangled in fishing nets, or may suffer the effects of pollution.

Survival:

The humpback whale is capable of living up to 95 years.

Humpback whales reach lengths of 35 to 48 feet long and can weigh up to 65 tons, although females are slightly larger than  males.

They are found in all the world's oceans, and migrate annually from the tropics to polar regions.

Humpbacks sometimes engage in social hunting in which several whales encircle a school (group) of fish and blow bubbles that form a "net" around the fish, then move in with their mouths open to devour their prey. Their favorite foods include krill (shrimp-like crustaceans) and small schooling fish such as herring and mackerel.

The "songs" of humpback whales are complex vocalizations made only by the males. Humpbacks are also well known for hurling their massive bodies out of the water in magnificent displays called breaching. Scientists are unsure why humpbacks breach, but believe it may be related to courtship or play activity.

National Parks:

Humpback whales are found in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, AK; Kenai Fjords National Park, AK; Haleakala National Park, HI; Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, HI; Acadia National Park, ME; Cape Hatteras National Seashore, NC.

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