A four-month old killer whale calf finally made its public viewing debut last week at the Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium in Aichi Prefecture. Visitors were excited to see the baby whale, with many making comments about how cute and how big it was, even though it is quite small by orca standards. Unfortunately the calf is only known right now as “the baby,” as it hasn’t been given a name yet.
Aquarium officials say they will begin publicly soliciting name suggestions for the female calf on March 20th. Meanwhile the young whale has been spending its days swimming alongside its mother, 27 year old Stella. Born in November of last year, the baby was a sizable 2 meters (6.5 feet) long, and between 160 and 180 kilograms (353 to 397 pounds). She is now 2.5 meters long (8.2 feet) and roughly 300 kilograms (660 pounds). Animal caretakers say she is starting to swim on her own more often, and will occasionally make jumps out of the water in imitation of her mother.
The calf joins the family of mother Stella, Bingo, the 31 year old father, and older daughter Ran, 7. The whales first arrived at the Nagoya aquarium in December 2011, on loan from Kamogawa Seaworld in Chiba Prefecture.
[via The Mainichi]