Antarctic (Southern) Minke whale

Bizarrely, having been described in the 1850s it was not recognized as a separate species until the 1990s. Thankfully, largely ignored by whalers, it came out of the whaling age with a population that still numbered in the hundreds of thousands – with current estimates falling around half a million individuals.

The Antarctic and the Southern Minke whales are thought to have diverged around 4.7 million years ago. They are found throughout much of the Southern hemisphere.

They are the main prey item for type A killer whales, with multiple occasions this hunt having been watched. There has been a recorded occasion when a group of 10 type B killer whales also killed one of these whales.

See Animals Wild