Navigation Links
A whale of a discovery: New sensory organ found in rorqual whales
Date:5/23/2012

Scientists at the University of British Columbia and the Smithsonian Institution have discovered a sensory organ in rorqual whales that coordinates its signature lunge-feeding behaviour and may help explain their enormous size.

Rorquals are a subgroup of baleen whales including blue, fin, minke and humpback whales. They are characterized by a special, accordion-like blubber layer that goes from the snout to the navel. The blubber expands up to several times its resting length to allow the whales to engulf large quantities of prey-laden water, which is then expelled through the baleen to filter krill and fish.

The study, to be featured on the cover of the journal Nature, details the discovery of an organ at the tip of the whale's chin, lodged in the ligamentous tissue that connects their two jaws.

NB: Illustrations of lunge-feeding and the location of the sensory organ, photos of the researchers at work at the Icelandic whaling station and a comprehensive Frequently Asked Questions are available at http://nmnh.typepad.com/pyenson_lab/nature-rorquals-organ.html.

Samples were collected from recently deceased fin and minke whale carcasses captured as part of Icelandic commercial whaling operations. Commercial whaling in Iceland resumed in 2006 and quotas are determined annually by its government.

Scanning of the whale's chin revealed a grape fruit-sized sensory organ, located between the tips of the jaws, and supplied by neurovascular tissue.

The research team was assisted by technicians at FPInnovations, the owner of Canada's only X-ray computed tomography (XRCT) machine large enough to accommodate the massive specimens. Used to scan giant logs, the XRCT machine provides a three dimensional map of the internal structure of whale tissues.

"We think this sensory organ sends information to the brain in order to coordinate the complex mechanism of lunge-feeding, which involves rotating the jaws, inver
'/>"/>

Contact: Heather Amos
heather.amos@ubc.ca
604-822-3213
University of British Columbia
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Whale population size, dynamics determined based on ancient DNA
2. Study amplifies understanding of hearing in baleen whales
3. New iPad, iPhone app helps mariners avoid endangered right whales
4. How to make high-end perfumes without whale barf
5. Ancient whale species sheds new light on its modern relatives
6. Giant squids giant eyes: The better to see hungry whales with
7. Genetic survey of endangered Antarctic blue whales shows surprising diversity
8. Blue whale behavior affected by man-made noise
9. What do killer whales eat in the Arctic?
10. Can we save the whales by putting a price on them?
11. Details of ancient shark attack preserved in fossil whale bone
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:11/21/2014)... , Nov. 20, 2014 Strict laws against ... are piloting the North American and European automotive sector ... growing, gesture recognition systems that are intuitive and able ... in the industry. New analysis from ... Recognition Market in Europe and ...
(Date:11/18/2014)... BETHESDA, Md. , Nov. 17, 2014 The ... European and U.S. regulatory agencies will speak and at least ... Quality Metrics Conference at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in ... is pleased once again to have significant support from the ... and Europe in our effort to ...
(Date:11/10/2014)... detergent pods began appearing on U.S. store shelves in ... numbers ever since. The small packets can be tossed ... out a liquid or powder. The convenience, though, has ... study from researchers at Nationwide Children,s Hospital found that ... reports of 17,230 children younger than 6 years of ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Gesture Recognition Intensifies with the Rise of In-car Smartphone Integration, Says Frost & Sullivan 2Gesture Recognition Intensifies with the Rise of In-car Smartphone Integration, Says Frost & Sullivan 3Gesture Recognition Intensifies with the Rise of In-car Smartphone Integration, Says Frost & Sullivan 4FDA's Janet Woodcock, EMA's Emer Cooke Headline PDA Quality Metrics Conference 2Study finds laundry detergent pods, serious poisoning risk for children 2
... Most previous studies have indicated that people in cities ... the country. By using more complex methods of analysis than ... discovered that people,s carbon emissions are practically the same in ... else, CO 2 emissions that cause climate change are ...
... Highlights: Advanced technologies create high-capacity ... was integrated easily with Army,s cellular biometric network ... Harris Corporation,s (NYSE: HRS ) ... for various mission scenarios at the Empire Challenge 2011 , ...
... being hunted to local extinction more than a century ago ... right whales of mainland New Zealand are coming home. ... time that whales from a small surviving population around remote, ... Zealand mainland. Before the onslaught of 19th century whaling, ...
Cached Biology News:City dwellers produce as much CO2 as countryside people do 2Harris Corporation's Highband Networking Radio Provides Mobile, Wideband Communications for Empire Challenge 2011 2Harris Corporation's Highband Networking Radio Provides Mobile, Wideband Communications for Empire Challenge 2011 3Fighting back from extinction, New Zealand right whale is returning home 2Fighting back from extinction, New Zealand right whale is returning home 3
(Date:11/22/2014)... During his lifetime Richard L. Sharp ... surround himself with great people and take risks to ... often marveled at his extraordinarily courageous attitude when taking ... -- even with his death impending—that’s how he continued ... would ultimately take his life. , Carrying on Sharp’s ...
(Date:11/22/2014)... CannLabs, Inc. (OTCQB: CANL), ... scientific testing methodologies relating to cannabis, today announced that ... of credit from an existing stockholder of the Company. ... this commitment from one of our existing stockholders,” stated ... capital will help accelerate our planned expansions into the ...
(Date:11/22/2014)... 21, 2014 On November 17th Chicago ... 2014 Emerging Medical Technologies Summit in San Francisco to ... Widely regarded among Silicon Valley investors and technology elites ... the win also positions Briteseed to move on ... in 2015 and compete with other elite innovation finalists ...
(Date:11/22/2014)... MI (PRWEB) November 22, 2014 ... to simulate the proper management of life-like respiratory ... test lung devices . Grand Rapids-based, Michigan Instruments ... to donate two of the respiratory simulation units ... $15,000 each. Grand Valley and Muskegon Community College ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Sherry Sharp, Wife of CarMax Founder, Richard Sharp, Accepts Seat on Board of Cure Alzheimer’s Fund 2Sherry Sharp, Wife of CarMax Founder, Richard Sharp, Accepts Seat on Board of Cure Alzheimer’s Fund 3CannLabs Secures $750,000 Line Of Credit 2Insight Product Development Accelerator Member Wins MedTech Innovator Award Competition 2Insight Product Development Accelerator Member Wins MedTech Innovator Award Competition 3Michigan Instruments Donates Two Respiratory Simulation Training and Test Lung (TTL) Devices to Grand Valley State University 2Michigan Instruments Donates Two Respiratory Simulation Training and Test Lung (TTL) Devices to Grand Valley State University 3
... Rochelle, NY, April 16, 2008Biotech and pharma companies ... drug discovery work, reports Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology ... and lower cost means of testing drug candidates ... the April 15 issue of GEN ( http://www.genengnews.com/articles/chitem.aspx?aid=2437 ...
... of the laboratory and into commercial products, many have ... health and the environment. Learning more about such ... of potential products, the pace of innovation, and the ... more efficient, timely international research effort. A major challenge ...
... VALENCIA, Calif., April 16 MannKind,Corporation (Nasdaq: ... will,join the company as Corporate Vice President and ... will report to Hakan Edstrom,President and Chief Operating ... Mr. Pfeffer,s appointment follows the previously,announced retirement of ...
Cached Biology Technology:International Council on Nanotechnology launches global research needs assessment 2Matthew J. Pfeffer Joins MannKind as Corporate Vice President and Chief Financial Officer 2
... phase reagent for Virus ... & unique water insoluble ... detergents and chaotropes; Engineered ... non-envelop viruses while preserving ...
Golgi Sampler Kit 10g each...
Caveolin Sampler Kit 10g each...
Monoclonal Antibody toSynapsin I a and I b Neurofilament associated protein from mouse brain extracts (4)....
Biology Products: