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Visit the chilly unknown at Georgia Aquarium to watch the magnificent beluga whales swim carefree around in the Georgia-Pacific Cold Water Quest gallery.
The beautiful white beluga whale is found in the arctic and sub-arctic regions of the world including Russia, Alaska, Canada, Greenland, and several northern European countries. These "canaries of the sea" are highly vocal, and at the Georgia Aquarium, if you listen closely you'll hear the high-pitched songs of the beluga whales. These animals are very sociable and are often observed swimming up to the glass to check out the guests face to face.
To understand beluga whales, numerous research initiatives have been supported or undertaken by Georgia Aquarium. Learn more about how Georgia Aquarium is making a difference around the world.
Maintaining belugas in human care is essential to the survival of belugas everywhere. Belugas in accredited facilities inspire wildlife conservation and allow for non-invasive research that is vital to protecting belugas in the wild. I support the Georgia Aquarium beluga conservation project and the important field research it conducts on behalf of marine mammals. Learn more about the importance of maintaining belugas in human care at www.caringtogetherforbelugas.com
The beluga whale is an opportunistic feeder. It is known to prey on about 100 different kinds of primarily bottom-dwelling animals. It will also suction prey animals off the bottom with its thick lips. The beluga whale consumes octopus, squid, crabs, shrimp, clams, snails, sandworms and various fish, such as capelin, cod, herring, smelt and flounder.
Yes. The beluga whale is the most vocal of the toothed whales. At least 11 different vocals have been documented, including high-pitched whistles, squeals, clucks, mews, chirps, trills, and bell-like tones. Arctic fishermen say they can hear the beluga whale sounds coming from miles away and that they can feel the vibration of their sounds coming through the hulls of their fishing boats. This behavior has earned this whale the nickname “canary of the sea.”
The species as a whole is listed as “Near Threatened” on the IUCN Red List. Certain populations around the world face threats from pollution, fluctuations in prey populations and increased predation. For example, the belugas of Ungava Bay and East Hudson Bay are “Endangered,” and those of Cook Inlet are listed as “Critically Endangered.”