It’s hard to be alone in this world. It’s even harder when you wander into a new TERRITORY. We tend to stick to our own for SAFETY and SECURITY, not letting outsiders into our inner circle. So when a lone NARWHAL (a type of whale) swam alone along the ST LAWRENCE river, which flows from LAKE ONTARIO to the ATLANTIC OCEAN, one could assume that things weren’t going well for our little CETACEA (aquatic mammal) friend.
Spell TERRITORY. Spell SAFETY. Spell SECURITY.
What type of whale are we talking about today? NARWHAL
Which river was he swimming along? ST LAWRENCE
The St Lawrence flows between two bodies of water. Name one. LAKE ONTARIO, ATLANTIC OCEAN
Another name for an aquatic mammal is a ______? CETACEA
But never underestimate the ABILITY to adopt! RESILIENCE (toughness) comes in many forms, and LOVE knows no color, shape, or SPECIES! For our mighty narwhal friend, who had previously found himself without a FAMILY, decided to make his own.
Spell ABILITY. Spell LOVE. Spell SPECIES.
The term for toughness is _____? RESILIENCE
Our narwhal decided to make his own what? FAMILY
According to the lesson, love knows no what? COLOR, SHAPE, SPECIES
How might parents who can’t have their own children go about creating their own family? ADOPT
For three years in a row, starting in 2016, the Group for Research and Education on Marine Mammals (GREMM) has captured VIDEO footage of a GREY, SPECKLED, and single TUSKED narwhal CAVORTING (playing) among a pod of white BELUGAS. They swim closely together, near the surface of the water. When the belugas blow BUBBLES, so does the narwhal. In fact, scientists noticed that the INTERACTIONS (how they behave towards each other) between the narwhal and the belugas appear to be IDENTICAL (same) as the belugas amongst themselves. As far as the male JUVENILE (teenage) belugas are concerned, the narwhal is just another one of the boys.
Spell VIDEO. Spell GREY. Spell SPECKLED.
What year was the narwhal first discovered? 2016
Another word for playing is ___? CAVORTING
What type of whale is the narwhal living with? BELUGAS
Name one description of the narwhal from this paragraph. GREY, SPECKLED, TUSKED
The ways in which we behave towards each other are also called what?
The interactions between the belugas and the narwhal appeared to be the same. What is another word that means the same? IDENTICAL
What did the belugas blow? BUBBLES
Another word for teenage is ___? JUVENILE
Since the first sighting of the narwhal was in 2016, how many years can we guess he has been living with his beluga brothers?
An acronym is a word or name formed as an abbreviation from the individual first letters in a phrase or word. For example, GREMM is the acronym for Group for Research and Education on Marine Mammals. Can you think of another acronym you’ve heard before?
Narwhals and belugas have many things in common. Both whales are known to be very SOCIAL (friendly). Both make a variety of CLICKS and CHIRPS to communicate. They come from the same family, MONODONTIDAE. They also share overlapping TERRITORIES (areas where they live). Despite this, these whales have RARELY been seen MINGLING in the wild. Each is a DISTINCTIVE (unique) species, especially when it comes to HUNTING. Narwhals prefer to DIVE for their dinner in deep, ice-covered waters while belugas get their dinner in the clear, SHALLOW waters along the coast. Despite sharing some territories, both groups tend to be in different places, especially in SUMMER.
Spell RARELY. Spell SUMMER. Spell MINGLING.
Both whale types are known to be friendly. Another term for this is ___? SOCIAL
Both whales make a variety of noises to communicate. Name one. CLICKS, CHIRPS
Do narwhals and belugas share overlapping ___? TERRITORIES
Each is a distinctive species, especially when it comes to what HUNTING
Narwhals prefer to what for their dinner? DIVE
Belugas get their dinner in what kind of waters? SHALLOW, CLEAR SHALLOW
What is the name of the family that narwhals and belugas belong to?
Do narwhals prefer DEEP waters or COASTAL waters? DEEP
Can you name another type of whale that reminds you of a narwhal or beluga?
The narwhal was found 620 miles SOUTH of its ARCTIC HABITAT (natural area), leading many to wonder: how did he end up in the St. Lawrence River? Scientists at GREMM POSIT (guess) that CLIMATE CHANGE may be to blame. As the amount of melting sea ice has increased, the sea ECOSYSTEM has been thrown out of BALANCE. This has forced whales like the narwhal to travel further in search of food. Belugas, for example, have been seen as far south as NEW JERSEY. Because both species are wandering further out of their traditional territories, researchers believe they might find themselves in each other’s company more often in the future.
Spell SOUTH. Spell BALANCE.
The narwhal was found how many miles south of its natural territory? 620
Is 620 closer to 500 or 1000?
What type of habitat does the narwhal live in? ARCTIC
What’s another word for guess? POSIT
What may be to blame for the narwhal wandering so far? CLIMATE CHANGE
The sea ecosystem has been thrown out of what? BALANCE
Belugas have been seen as far as which state? NEW JERSEY
What is the opposite direction of the south? NORTH
Why would the Arctic ice melt throw the sea ecosystem out of balance?
If narwhals and belugas find themselves in each other’s company more often in the future, does that mean there’s a chance that BABIES may follow? In other habitats, GRIZZLY and POLAR bears have been seen together as each wanders further out in search of food.
INTERBREEDING (mating between two species) has been observed, leading to the birth of what has been called the “PIZZLY” or “GROLAR” bear. So what would we call the OFFSPRING of a narwhal and a beluga? Some have already chosen the name NARLUGA. In fact, a skull found in GREENLAND in the 1990s is thought to be that of a narwhal and beluga HYBRID (offspring of two different species). Its skull resembled both types of whale, only bigger! Love always finds a way.
Spell BABIES. Spell OFFSPRING.
Name one of the two types of bears seen together. GRIZZLY, POLAR
Mating between two species is also called ___? INTERBREEDING
What is one of the names given to the offspring of a grizzly and polar bear? PIZZLY, GROWLER
What has the offspring of a narwhal and beluga been named? NARLUGA
The offspring of two different species is called a ___? HYBRID
In which country was a NARLUGA found? GREENLAND
How many years ago was 1990?
Using two pictures of a narwhal and a beluga, cut into quarters, have the student combine the pieces into what they feel a Narluga would look like in real life.
The Inuit people of the ARCTIC have a legend about how the narwhal came into existence. It was said that a woman was standing near the ocean while a pod of belugas swam by the ice. She had been cruel to her stepson, and he tied her to one of the whales. She fell into the water and braided her hair together into a single strand before turning into a narwhal and swimming away.
Write a legend about how a narwhal came to live amongst a pod of belugas.