Minke Whale

Balaenoptera acutorostrata

This is the smallest of the baleen family of whales to be found in Scottish waters, being between 8.5 and 9 metres long.

This whale weighs about 10 tonnes and is usually seen singly or as a cow with her calf. When the cow gives birth to a single calf, which is about 2.5 metres long.

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Discover more about the Minke Whale

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When to see

We don't actually know what Minke whales do in the winter. It is thought that they may travel to the waters of the Azores, but there no confirmed evidence.

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Where to see

Minke whales are increasingly seen around the coast of Scotland, however the main hot spot for sightings is around the Small Isles (Rum, Eigg and Muck) between the islands of Skye and Mull. Minke whales, particularly juveniles can be very inquisitive and may approach boats.

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Did you know?

In the most recent round of meetings of the International Whaling Commission, Japan once again secured an increased quota for the hunting of whales for scientific research.  The 2007/8 kill will rise to 1035 whales (an increase of 20%). This provides a legitimate source of whale meat for the Japanese market. At present Norway, which also hunts whales for research, is banned under the CITES convention from exporting minke whale meat to Japan.

Binoculars Icon Blue
When to see

We don't actually know what Minke whales do in the winter. It is thought that they may travel to the waters of the Azores, but there no confirmed evidence.

Map Icon Blue
Where to see

Minke whales are increasingly seen around the coast of Scotland, however the main hot spot for sightings is around the Small Isles (Rum, Eigg and Muck) between the islands of Skye and Mull. Minke whales, particularly juveniles can be very inquisitive and may approach boats.

Book Icon Blue
Did you know?

In the most recent round of meetings of the International Whaling Commission, Japan once again secured an increased quota for the hunting of whales for scientific research.  The 2007/8 kill will rise to 1035 whales (an increase of 20%). This provides a legitimate source of whale meat for the Japanese market. At present Norway, which also hunts whales for research, is banned under the CITES convention from exporting minke whale meat to Japan.

Binoculars Icon Blue
When to see

We don't actually know what Minke whales do in the winter. It is thought that they may travel to the waters of the Azores, but there no confirmed evidence.

Map Icon Blue
Where to see

Minke whales are increasingly seen around the coast of Scotland, however the main hot spot for sightings is around the Small Isles (Rum, Eigg and Muck) between the islands of Skye and Mull. Minke whales, particularly juveniles can be very inquisitive and may approach boats.

Book Icon Blue
Did you know?

In the most recent round of meetings of the International Whaling Commission, Japan once again secured an increased quota for the hunting of whales for scientific research.  The 2007/8 kill will rise to 1035 whales (an increase of 20%). This provides a legitimate source of whale meat for the Japanese market. At present Norway, which also hunts whales for research, is banned under the CITES convention from exporting minke whale meat to Japan.