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The Delphinapterus leucas, better known as the #Beluga Whale or white whale, is an Arctic and sub-Arctic marine mammal. It lives for about 30 years and can grow up to 13 feet for females and 18 feet for males. Interestingly, these pale animals are born grey and turn even a darker shade of blue-grey or grey when they reach a month old. From then, they turn white as they lose the pigmentation as they approach seven years of age. The beluga whale, which has a very highly developed auditory cortex, is also characterized by its high-pitched squeaks, squeals, and whistles, earning them the title of the sea canary.

Getting to know beluga whales

Recently, a diver had a lovely close encounter with some beluga whales, which was captured in the video below.

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In it, the man is seen paddling out to sea singing, "Oh, the beluga! Ah beluga!" in the hopes of attracting some of them to come nearer to his kayak. Little did he know that the beluga whale did hear him and even moved closer to him to swim alongside his kayak. Moved by the experience, the man decided to jump into the water to get closer to the whales. He put on his gear and dove in for an experience that would make one very emotional. As he dove into the water, he heard them singing their beautiful song. The man continued to sing with him for a moment that he would surely remember.

An unforgettable experience

The video posted by The Dodo showed how one man experienced firsthand the singing of beluga whales, majestic creatures under water. This is a prime example of how these creatures must be observed—in their natural habitat.

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Another video of a beluga whale at the Mystic Aquarium in Connecticut that went viral in 2014 showed how the animal seemed playful.

However, specialists claimed that the whales were in fact not being playful with the children in the video and instead were "[expressing] aggression," beluga behavior specialist Dr. Lori Marino told The Dodo. He explained, "The open mouth and posturing are typical of the way cetaceans express aggression and I've seen a lot in captivity in the very same circumstances." The aggression may have stemmed out of the fact that these beluga whales were kept in captivity, further driving home the point that animals should be observed in the wild, and not in tanks and cages. There has been increased talk about shutting down such venues for animal captivity, especially with documentaries such as "The Cove" and "Blackfish" gaining popularity.

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