The right whales are the baleen whales belonging to the family
Balaenidae. There are four species in two genera: Eubalaena (three
species) and Balaena (one species, the Bowhead Whale). Right whales
grow to 18 m (60 ft) long and weigh up to 100 metric tons. Their
rotund bodies are mostly black, with distinctive white callosities
(skin abrasions) on their heads. They are called "right whales"
because whalers thought the whales were the "right" ones to catch
because they float when killed. Populations were vastly reduced by
intensive harvesting during the active years of the whaling
Nowadays, instead of hunting them, people often watch this acrobatic
family for pleasure. The three right whale species live in
geographically distinct locations. Around 300 Atlantic Northern
Whales live in the North Atlantic, while the North Pacific has
approximately 200 Pacific Northern Right Whales. Finally, about
Southern Right Whales are spread throughout the southern part of the
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Today's selected anniversaries:
Tahiti became a French territory.
France granted 100 hectares at Vimy Ridge "freely, and for all time,
to the Government of Canada, the free use of the land exempt from all
President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the Federal-Aid Highway Act of
1956, officially creating the U.S. Interstate Highway System.
During the STS-71 mission, the Space Shuttle Atlantis became the first
space shuttle to dock with the Russian space station Mir.
The Sampoong Department Store collapsed in the Seocho-gu district of
Seoul, South Korea, killing 501 and injuring 937.
Wikiquote of the day:
"Grown-ups never understand anything for themselves, and it is
tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to
them." -- Antoine de Saint-Exupéry