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Overview: The Annual Cycle of the Gray Whale
January February March April May June
July August September October November December

September: Feeding in the Arctic
From about June through September on the arctic feeding grounds, a gray whale can eat up to 2,400 pounds of food in one day! This baby's mouth is open so you can see the baleen. It takes the place of teeth in this whale species. Baleen helps the whale eat. Gray whales are unique feeders because they dive to the bottom, suck in a mouthful of mud and water, and then use their giant tongue to push the muddy water out of their mouth. The amphipods and other yummy animals are left behind on the baleen. Then the whale swallows the food.

A baby whale's mouth is open, showing the baleen.

Photo: Renee Bonner