Narwhal

narwhal
narwhal

Conservation

Least concern conservation status

Scientific Classification

OrderArtiodactyla
InfraorderCetacea
FamilyMonodontidae
GenusMonodon
Binomial nameMonodon monoceros

Range Map

Range of species in blue

Description

Narwhals are easy to spot due to their tusks, with males generally being the only ones to grow this. Occasionally they will grow two, and sometimes a female will grow a tusk.

Narwhals measure between 12.1-14.6 ft (3.7-5m), weighing between 1,500-4,000 lb. The male’s tusk can grow up to 9.8 ft (3m). Males grow larger than females.

They have light and dark mottling, with a small head and short beak.

Narwhals change in color as they grow older, with very old animals appearing entirely white.

Young narwhals are blotchy gray or brown, turning gray then black, then a mottled light and dark color before eventually turning white.