Advertisement

Gray Whale Travels 13,988 Miles In Record-Breaking Migration05:35
Download

Play
A gray whale calf (Eschrichtius robustus) emerges from the waters of the Ojo de Liebre Lagoon, Baja California Sur State, Mexico, on March 3, 2015. (Omar Torres/AFP/Getty Images)
A gray whale calf (Eschrichtius robustus) emerges from the waters of the Ojo de Liebre Lagoon, Baja California Sur State, Mexico, on March 3, 2015. (Omar Torres/AFP/Getty Images)
This article is more than 6 years old.

The western gray whale recently set the new world record as the mammal with the longest known migration, according to a study published by the academic journal Biology Letters.

The researcher behind the study, Bruce Mate of Oregon State University, found that a female western gray whale swam a total of 13,988 miles - from Russia to Mexico and back - in 172 days.

That migration also raises questions about the whale's status as a critically-endangered species, suggesting that the 180 known western gray whales may be the same species as the eastern gray whale, which has a population estimated at 20,000.

Here & Now's Jeremy Hobson speaks with Mate to learn what else the study has uncovered.

Guest

This segment aired on April 15, 2015.

Advertisement

Advertisement