Whales

Captured mid-hop, the floppy feet of a white hare were indeed good luck for this photographer.

Celebrate Winter in the Wild With 15 Photos of Animals Enjoying the Snow

These chilly but cute creatures will remind you what’s so wonderful about winter

Ringed by dramatic mountains, Cumberland Bay, on the coast of South Georgia Island, is home to whales, seabirds, penguins and elephant seals. The island draws scores of sightseeing cruises each summer.

Humpbacks Have Rebounded in This Spot Decimated by Whaling

South Georgia Island’s Cumberland Bay has seen a resurgence of the marine mammals

This blue whale skull is one of the largest in any collection on earth.

How an Eye-Popping Museum Specimen Boosted the Beleaguered Blue Whale

For decades, visitors to the Smithsonian could behold the immense size of the sea mammal with their own eyes

A turtle appears to smile as a dragonfly alights on its nose.

See 25 Breathtaking Images From the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Contest

Representing some of the world's best nature photography, the pictures are being put to a popular vote for the People's Choice Award

This year was marked by many broken records in the ocean.

The Top Ten Ocean Stories of 2023

Major discoveries, an undersea tragedy and international cooperation were some of the biggest saltwater moments of the year

Monarch butterflies' signature white spots could help them fly—and inspire better drones.

Seven Scientific Discoveries From 2023 That Could Lead to New Inventions

Biologists learned lots about animals and plants this year, and their findings could inspire better robots, medicine and environmental technologies

Advances in artificial intelligence and dinosaur discoveries were just some of the major science stories this year.

The Ten Most Significant Science Stories of 2023

From an asteroid sample that was delivered to Earth to a discovery about human migration from North America, these were the biggest moments of the year

Orcas are highly social and are likely learning the boat-ramming behavior from one another.

Orcas Sink Another Boat in the Strait of Gibraltar

The crew is safe, but the marine mammals did so much damage to the Polish sailing yacht that it couldn't make it back to port

Basilosaurus hunts fish.

Ancient Whales Were the Biggest and Smallest of Their Kind to Ever Roam the Oceans

New discoveries show how whale diversity exploded after the dinosaurs disappeared

North Atlantic right whales face threats of entanglement in fishing gear and injuries caused by ships.

North Atlantic Right Whale Numbers May Be Stabilizing at Last

After a decade of decline, the latest population estimate is good news—but conservationists say we "have a long ways to go" to safeguard the marine mammals

With their mating season approaching, two male Nubian ibex fight for supremacy on a cliffside. The photograph won the Animals in their Environment category.

See 12 Winning Images From the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Contest

The stunning entries showcase the behaviors of ancient and elusive species, from horseshoe crabs to tapirs and orcas—as well as the threats they face

A killer whale in the Salish Sea is observed harassing a porpoise.

Why Do Orcas Keep Harassing Porpoises?

An endangered group of killer whales in the Pacific Northwest has been toying with porpoises for decades—and new research offers some possible explanations

Orcas are opportunistic feeders that will take advantage of human fishing activities to get an easy meal.

Nine Orcas Have Died in Fishing Gear Near Alaska This Year

A "new behavior" from the animals might be linked to this sudden uptick in deaths, as they have been feeding in front of fishing nets, a trade group says

Great white sharks were once abundant in South Africa’s False Bay and Gansbaai regions. But now, they appear to have ventured to safer waters elsewhere.

Where Did South Africa's Missing Sharks Go?

After a spate of orca attacks spooked the fish, they have now been found

Why can't we stop anthropomorphizing our animal friends and foes?

Are Wild Animals Really Just Like Us?

A summer of news reports about orca, otter and bird “attacks” has the public wondering if trying to understand animal behavior in human terms is misguided

The female whale was found stranded in January on a beach near Palm Coast, Florida.

How an Orca Skeleton Made Its Way From Florida to the Smithsonian

Washed up in a rare stranding event, the newly collected specimen will offer rich exploration for researchers

Sixteen-year-old Lindsey Stallworth cleans the whale skull in the lab at the Alabama School of Mathematics and Science.

Teenager Helps Uncover 34-Million-Year-Old Whale Skull in Alabama

Working with one of her teachers, the 16-year-old student found the fossil, which may represent a new species, on her family’s property

Egyptian paleontologists Abdullah Gohar, Mohamed Sameh and Hesham Sallam are part of the study team that discovered the fossil and identified the new species of basilosaurid whale.

Fossil of Tiny, Extinct Whale Discovered in Egypt, Named for King Tut

The species was around the size of a bottlenose dolphin and thrived 41 million years ago

An artist's interpretation of what Perucetus colossus would have looked like when it lived some 38 million years ago

This Massive Extinct Whale May Be the Heaviest Animal That Ever Lived

The newly discovered behemoth could unseat the blue whale for the title, but scientists can only make educated guesses about its weight

Rice's whales were initially thought to be a subspecies of Bryde’s whales—until scientists figured out they were a distinct species.

Fishermen Spot Rare Endangered Rice's Whale in the Gulf of Mexico

Scientists say no more than 100 individuals of the species exist in the wild, placing the Rice's whale among the scarcest marine mammals in the world

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