What Does The Blue Whale Eat? Top 5 Foods, 10 Interesting Facts

What does the blue whale eat, and how does it manage to sustain its huge size? Blue whales are filter feeders, trusting on a diet calm primarily of some of the smallest organisms in the ocean. The whales of the sea are the most gigantic creatures known to inhabit the environment. These graze mainly on crustaceans and filter massive amounts of oceanic fluid using their material discs. A few of the largest creatures may consume up to 6 tons of plankton every single day. Blue whales live in all waters even the Arctic Ocean. a total of five recognized varieties of blue whales.

The current estimated population of blue whales is barely a tiny percentage of the amount that existed before contemporary whaling industries dramatically cut the number of animals at the beginning of the twentieth century, although concentrations are growing worldwide. The major risks to blue whales today are collisions with ships and relationships in equipment used for fishing.

What does the blue whale eat? Diet, Eating Habits and Consumption

Here are the facts about what does the blue whale eat:


Blue whales are known to strongly prefer krill, which are small, shrimp-like lobsters. They swim with their mouths wide open, overcoming massive volumes of water filled with krill, and then use their whalebone dishes to filter out these tiny creatures.


Small Fish

In the calculation of krill, blue whales may also consume small fish such as herring and anchovies when available. They use a similar filter-feeding technique to capture these fish.

small fish
small fish

Filter Feeding

Blue whales are filter feeders, meaning they depend on a unique method of feeding. They take in large mouthfuls of water, trapping their prey within their baleen plates. While discharging the excess water. This method allows them to separate their food from the water.

filter feeding
blue whale eating process

Massive Daily Feeding

Blue whales must eat an important amount of food to support their immense size. On an average day, they can consume several tons of krill and small fish, which provides the energy necessary for their survival and growth.

Role in Ecosystem

Blue whales play a vital role in the ocean’s ecosystem. It controls the population of krill and maintains a balance in the food chain. They are considered keystone species. Their diet impacts the wealth of numerous marine species.

So, we have the basic idea about “what does the blue whale eat” & their diet of krill, small fish, and their filter-feeding method? It is an essential aspect of their life, allowing these gentle giants to succeed and remain the largest creatures on our planet.

Why do blue whales eat small shrimp?

Blue whales primarily feed on small shrimp-like creatures called krill for some reasons:

Wealth: Krill are incredibly plentiful in many ocean regions. They often form solid groups near the surface. Which makes them a readily available and energy-rich food source.

Efficiency: Krill is well-organized in relationships of energy growth per effort consumed. Blue whales can consume large quantities of krill by filter-feeding. These tiny organisms are focused in compact groups. It provides a focused and well-organized source of nutrition.

Size Match: Krill are well-suited to the blue whale’s filter-feeding method. They are small enough to be trapped by the baleen plates in the whale’s mouth. It makes it suitable for blue whales to capture and consume them.

Seasonal Availability: Blue whales often follow the regular migrations of krill. During certain times of the year, krill populations are at their highest. It offers a plentiful and available food source for blue whales.

Sustaining Their Size: Blue whales are the largest animals on Earth. And it maintains its colossal size. They need to consume vast amounts of food regularly.

Blue whales feed on small shrimp-like krill. Because they are an energy-efficient, readily available, and appropriately sized food source. That helps tolerate the blue whale’s massive size and energy demands.

 blue whale
blue whale

A Whole List of the Top 5 Foods the Blue Whale Eats

The Blue Whale Top 5 kinds of seafood:

  • Krill
  • Small fish
  • Plankton
  • Small squid
  • Small crustaceans

These make up the core workings of their diet, with krill being the most significant food source.

food chain of the ocean
food chain of the ocean

Do blue whales eat plankton?

Yes, blue whales do eat plankton. Plankton, which includes both zooplankton (animal plankton)


and phytoplankton (plant-like plankton).


Whales eat a wide range of creatures, especially microscopic zooplankton to huge mammals. A few kinds consume zooplankton populations gastropods and euphausiids, sometimes known as “shrimp”. Others eat schooled fish. The sperm of the whale feasts on the octopus. Different kinds of material may influence how a particular animal eats.

It can be part of the blue whale’s diet. These tiny, often small organisms are filter-fed by blue whales. Along with larger prey like krill. Plankton helps as a source of diet for these massive marine creatures. They add to the variety of their diet depending on the availability of different prey items in their feeding areas.

Do blue whales eat sharks?

No, blue whales do not typically eat sharks. Blue whales are filter feeders and primarily consume small marine organisms such as krill, plankton, and small fish. Their diet contains tiny creatures that they filter from the water using their baleen plates, as I mentioned earlier. Sharks, on the other hand, are much larger than the small prey that blue whales target. They have very different hunting methods.

Blue whales and sharks live in different niches within the marine ecosystem. They do not have a significant overlap in their diets or feeding habits. Sharks are carnivorous killers that typically feed on a wide choice of marine life, including fish, seals, and other larger prey.

What eats killer whales?

Killer whales, or orcas, are apex predators in the marine ecosystem. It means that they have very few natural predators. Some possible threats to killer whales include:

Larger Killer Whales

In some cases, larger adult orcas within the same case may pose a threat to younger or weaker members, particularly break up. Intraspecific anger can occur. But it’s not a common rate.

Large Sharks

Some large species of sharks, such as great white sharks and tiger sharks. It may rarely target killer whales, particularly young or injured whales. These meetings are relatively rare, and orcas are known to defend themselves strongly.

large shark eat blue whale

Human Activities

Human activities, such as hunting, pollution, habitat destruction, and interactions with fishing gear. It poses a significant threat to killer whales. Pollution and habitat ruin can affect their food sources and overall health.

It’s important to note that while these are possible threats to killer whales threats.

Blue Whales Scientific Classification

Scientific classification of blue whales (as per Wikipedia)

Domain:        Eukaryote

Kingdom:      Animalia

Phylum:         Chordata

Class:             Mammalia

Order:            Artiodactyl

Infraorder:    Cetacea

Family:           Balaenopteridae

Genus:           Balaenoptera

Species:         B. musculus

10 Interesting Blue Whale Facts

Blue whales are among the biggest creatures that have ever existed on the Planet. These huge aquatic creatures can reach 100 meters in length and weigh up to 200 tons. The tongues of these animals alone are capable of weighing more than a large elephant. Their coronary arteries weigh equally as a vehicle.

1. Every year, grey whales migrate between the balmy Gulf of California and to eat sites in the freezing Northern oceans, covering a distance of 12,000-15,400 miles. During a typical lifecycle of forty years, the whale travels between the earth and the celestial body.

2. Entire groups of whales that produce sperm can be seen napping with their entire bodies horizontal to the bottom of the sea and their skulls floating at the edge of the water. This strange slumber continues for up to 15 minutes and occurs around 6 p.m. and night. Bowhead whales display a slow-wave sleep. This means that one hemisphere of the brain of blue whale sleeps at a time while the other remains awake to control essential functions like swimming and surfacing for air.

3. The solitary male narwhal’s spike resembles a bigger molar bite with tens of millions of sensory nerves that may reach up to ten feet long. These are utilized to “taste” the quantities of various substances found in water and were originally marketed across Europe as mythological unicorn horns.

4. Whales frequently confuse trash from the ocean for a possible source of nourishment. A 45-foot-long fishing net, a 70-centimetre chunk of material recovered from an automobile, and additionally lately 40 containers of plastics or rubbish from every corner of the globe were discovered jammed inside the guts. According to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Newsletter, 60 percent of animals have been shown to consume particles, reaching rates reaching as high as thirty-one percent in some groups. As a result, a staggering 22% of the population is at a greater likelihood of mortality.

5. Whales sustain a diverse range of life exclusively on the outermost layer of their rear ends. Many organisms, particularly crabs. mollusk, algae, organisms, and sea lice, adhere to whales and nourish tiny communities of fishes. This is essentially a miniature ecology.

6. Blue whale newborns are undoubtedly one of the biggest infants on the planet, and at the beginning, they are one of the greatest mature mammals. These weigh roughly 8,800 pounds and are approximately 26 feet in length. Animals acquire 200 pounds each day. Its rate of development is certainly among the most rapid in the animal kingdom, with a multiple billion-fold rise in the material in eighteen months between fertilization and nursing.

7. A blue whale’s tongue simply is capable of weighing more than a large elephant.

8. The blue whale’s heart is enormous. It is the biggest heart in the world of mammals, measuring over 400 pounds, the same as a gorilla, and nearly the measurement of a clown car. When a blue whale descends for food, its massive heart may individual tired double for each minute.

9. Blue whales belong to the world’s longest-living creatures. Experts can calculate an approximate age by measuring the thickness of honey in the ears, similar to how tree rings are counted. The earliest blue whale recovered in this manner was estimated to be more than a century old, but the usual life span is assumed to be between 80 and 90 yrs. Bowhead whale’s lifespans are known for their remarkable longevity. They have one of the longest life spans of any mammal. Bowhead whales can live for over 200 years.

10. Since the fishing industry has ceased to be a concern, blue whale regrowth continues to be sluggish, and new risks, such as collisions with ships and the effects of warming temperatures, continue to afflict the species. There is one colony of approximately 2,000 blue whales that live off the shores of the Golden State. The Worldwide Union for Preservation of Wildlife tilts the class as rare. Through any luck, with time, the earth’s major calm giants will over wander the oceans aplenty.

For more, check out: How Long is a Blue Whale?

blue whale body parts
blue whale body parts


So, what does the blue whale eat? It’s a question that has led us on a journey finished the depths of the ocean. It reveals the delicate balance of life beneath the waves and the incredible adaptations. That enables these gentle giants to maintain their massive size. Understanding their dietary habits sheds light on the vital role blue whales play in the marine ecosystem.

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