The sperm whale is the largest toothed whale of all seas. It is the largest animal with teeth ever. It got its name from the shape of its head: “Pott” is a Low German word for “pot”.
Male sperm whales can grow to be 20 meters long and weigh 50 tons. The females remain somewhat shorter and lighter. The brain weighs almost ten kilograms, making it the heaviest in the entire animal world. Sperm whale skin has furrows that run lengthwise down the body.
Sperm whales can dive to depths of more than 1,000 meters. They can last for over an hour without taking a breath. Their main food is squid, which only lives deep in the sea. They also eat some fish and various crabs.
How do sperm whales live and reproduce?
Sperm whales are mammals. By and large, sperm whales live like other whales. The special thing about sperm whales is the group formation: the females live among themselves, together with the young animals. This leads to groups of 15 to 20 animals. Males leave these groups when they become sexually mature. They then form their own groups.
The males return to the females for mating. There are about ten females for every male. The gestation period of the females is not exactly known. It is estimated to last just under a year or a little more.
Young animals weigh about 1,000 kilograms, which is about as heavy as a small car. Their body length is four to five meters. They suckle milk from their mother for about the first two years of life. Females become sexually mature at about 9 years of age, males only at 25 years of age. Sperm whales can live up to 70 years.