Narwhal facts for kids
|Size comparison with a human|
All narwhals have two teeth in their upper jaw. After the first year of a male narwhal's life, its left tooth grows outward, spirally. There are some narwhals that are double-tusked, but they are not as common. This long, single or double tooth projects from its upper jaw and can grow to be 8.75 feet (2.7 meters) long. Tusks are usually twisted in a counterclockwise direction and are hollow inside. The tusk's function is uncertain, perhaps used as a formidable jousting weapon in courtship and dominance rivalry, in getting food, and/or for channeling and amplifying sonar pulses (which they emit). The tusk is not used in hunting. Long ago, narwhal sightings probably reinforced (or started) the unicorn legends. In fact, when people found the horn of a dead narwhal washed up on shore, they thought that they had found the horn of a unicorn.
Narwhal can dive deep into the sea to around 800 meters, but can also sometimes dive up to 1,500 meters. This makes them one of the deepest diving sea mammals.
Narwhals live in the icy waters of the Arctic seas. They do not go far away from ice. Narwhals are migrating animals who like to move from one place to live in another place for a while.
These groups can be as big as 10 or even as big as 100 sometimes. But when Winter comes around again, they move back to the Icy waters, where they breathe from small holes in the ice. Every so often lucky people get to see them in North-West Russia.
Narwhals are both hunted by polar bears and killer whales. Sometimes however, even humans hunt Narwhals. The native Inuit people who are sometimes called the Eskimos, are allowed to hunt the Narwhals for food.
The Narwhals blubber keeps it warm in the Antartic Sea's cold water all year long, and during the summer it swims in groups of '10-100' to Northern Canada and Iceland.
|Wikispecies has information on: Monodon monoceros.|
Images for kids
This narwhal skull has rare double tusks. Usually, the canine tooth only on the left side of the upper jaw becomes a tusk. Rarely, males develop two tusks. This specimen, however, was from a female (Zoologisches Museum, Hamburg; collected in 1684)
A polar bear scavenging a narwhal carcass
The head of a lance made from a Narwhal tusk with a meteorite iron blade
Narwhal Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.