By by J. E. Webb and J. H. Elgood.
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But the division remains speculative, in part because the actual migration routes are still poorly known. Recently Steven Katona and others who study photographs of humpback flukes (tail fins) have been able to show some clear patterns of migration and segregation. Most humpbacks summering off Newfoundland migrate to areas near Puerto Rico, or to Silver Bank, north of Hispaniola, and whales from the Gulf of Maine have also been photographed on Silver Bank. There have been no photographic matches between the Gulf of Maine and Newfoundland-Labrador, suggesting that separate substocks summer in these areas.
A new, more plausible theory is that when the whale rises a small pool of sea water collects just above the blowhole, trapped by the surrounding fleshy ridges. When the whale exhales forcibly, this water is blown away, forming the spout. Although Aristotle knew that whales were air-breathing mammals, others ignored this insight for many centuries. Most ancient naturalists and seamen were convinced that whales took in and blew out sea water, and many believed the beasts attacked unsuspecting ships by spouting great geysers of water on them until they sank.
Page 9 changed their genus designation Balaena to Megaptera. The name Megaptera nodosa was thereafter used to refer to the humpback until 1932, when Remington Kellogg, an American whale biologist, showed that the description given by G. Borowski was valid. Since then Megaptera novaeangliae has been the formal designation of the humpback whale. Megaptera means "large-winged" and refers to the humpbacks' long pectoral fins; as we have seen, novaeangliae refers to New England, where Borowski first described the humpbacks that were found in great numbers there.
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