Ocean Animals for Kids – Whales, Sea Otter, Orca, Sea Lion + more


Did you know that almost 3 quarters of the
Earth is covered by OCEANS? They’re all connected to each other. The biggest ocean is called the PACIFIC OCEAN. Pacific means “Peaceful.” But this ocean can have giant waves…doesn’t
look so peaceful to me! There are many amazing animals that live in
the Pacific Ocean. Some are huge…some are tiny. Some are fish…some are mammals…some are
crustaceans…some are squishy invertebrates…there are even birds that spend their whole lives
on the Pacific Ocean. Let’s go see! {barking sound} Gosh these are loud critters. These are CALIFORNIA SEA LIONS. Sea lions are big, bulky mammals. The male sea lions are bigger than the females
– reaching almost 2 meters long and weighing about 300 kg. That’s about the size of 4 people! Sea lions like to sun themselves on coastal
rocks. You can sometimes see hundreds of sea lions,
all sunning themselves together. They also have their babies on land. But Sea Lions spend most of their time in
the water, swimming and playing. They hold their breath and can dive underwater
to catch food. They like to eat fish, squid, octopuses, and
all kinds of shellfish like clams and mussels. You might confuse SEALS with SEA LIONS. But sea lions have visible ear flaps, and
can sort of walk on land, using their large flippers. Seals have much smaller flippers, and they
don’t walk – they wriggle on their bellies. Also – no cute little ear flaps. The sea otter is another ocean mammal. It lives in the northern Pacific, in the shallow
waters right along the coast. Sea otters are known for staying well-groomed. Taking care of their thick coat of waterproof
fur helps keep the sea otter warm. Did you notice their webbed hind feet? These help the sea otter swim! They’re really good at diving to catch food. They can stay underwater for a few minutes. They hold their breath and look around. The sea otters can even close their nose and
ears so water doesn’t get in. What do they catch? Sea otters like to eat all kinds of seafood,
including clams, mussels, crabs, squid, and fish. They bring their catch back up to the surface. Then the sea otter floats on its back, and
eats food off its tummy! It uses a rock to break open its meal. Sea otters have favourite rocks they carry
around with them. Did you know sea otters have pockets? Really, they’re flaps of loose skin under
each arm that they use like little pouches. They also use them when diving to carry as
much food as possible back to the surface. Sea otters spend most of their time in the
ocean. They even have their babies there. {aww cute} They are very social, and form
groups of up to 100. They float together in these groups, called
rafts. They even sleep while floating, often holding
on to the seaweed. They also like to hold on to each other so
they don’t float away from the group. The blue whale is the largest animal that
has EVER lived. It’s even bigger than the biggest dinosaurs. They get up to 30 meters long (almost a hundred
feet) and can weigh almost 200 tons. Would you believe blue whales get this big
eating TEENY TINY food? They live on KRILL, which is a very, very
small animal that kind of looks like a shrimp. A blue whale has to eat millions of krill
each day. The whales swim through the water with their
mouths open, letting the swarms of krill float inside. Then the whale closes its mouth and lets the
water flow out through a kind of screen called BALEEN PLATES. The water goes out, but the krill are trapped
inside. Yum yum yum! Blue whales have enormous babies, which is
not surprising. They are about 7 meters long and weigh more
than 2 tons when they are born. Whales are mammals, which means they nurse
their young. Baby blue whales drink more than 400 liters
of milk from their mothers each day. Hey, do you hear something? Oh, it’s just a blue whale song. That’s right. Blue whales sing to each other! I wonder what they’re saying? Did you know that coral is an animal? It looks like a very pretty rock. But nope. It’s an animal! One way you can tell is because it eats other
animals for food. Each individual animal is called a polyp. Coral are related to jellyfish, which you
can see at the early stage of its life when it can swim freely around, looking for a home. The polyp attaches to a rock or some old coral. Then it grows a hard outer skeleton. Over time, if many polyps grow together, they
form what we call a CORAL REEF. Coral Reefs are home to many, many kinds of
sea life, including all sorts of beautiful fish, starfish, sea slugs, sea turtles, eels,
seahorses (that’s a kind of fish)…coral reefs are habitats for many animals, and so
it’s really important they are protected. You may be wondering, how does an animal that
is stuck in one place eat? Coral eat by catching tiny floating animals
called zooplankton. They stretch out long, stinging tentacles
and catch their prey as it floats by. Then they pull their tiny prey into their
mouths. Many coral also have a close relationship
with algae. The algae can do photosynthesis, using sunlight
as well as carbon dioxide from the coral to make sugar for food. The algae share the food they make with the
coral. The coral, in turn, give the algae a safe
home. We call this kind of mutually beneficial relationship
SYMBIOSIS. Here’s another kind of symbiotic relationship
– the orange clownfish and the magnificent sea anemones. They are two very different kind of animals,
but they live together in harmony. The clownfish makes its home in and around
the anemone. These cute stripedy fish like to eat algae,
as well as various small animals like worms. They swim in and out of the anemone tentacles. The Anemone, on the other hand, stays rooted
in one place and waits for its food to come close enough to catch. Anemones will eat fish, shrimp, mussels, sea
urchins…they use their stinging tentacles to stun their prey before eating it. But they don’t sting the clownfish! The anemone might be using the clownfish as
bait to attract some bigger fish for its dinner. The other fish come nosing around, and bam! Stung by the anemone. Here’s a familiar sight to whale watchers
– the gray whale. This kind of whale looks like it’s covered
with rocks! Those are actually little animals called Barnacles. When the barnacles fall off they leave scars
behind on the whale. Poor little whale. I mean poor giant enormous whale! The gray whales grow up to about 15 meters
and weigh about 40 tons. This is another baleen whale. It eats by snuffling up small creatures from
the bottom of the ocean, and then filtering them using the baleen plates in its mouth. Gray whales travel long distances every year
– up to 11,000 km. They travel along familiar routes, which makes
it easier for whale watchers to spot these gray whales than some other, more unpredictable
whales. They are often seen on the West Coast of North
America, singing songs to each other and herding their little babies. Well, when I say little, I mean compared to
the parents. Baby gray whales are about 5 meters long and
weigh a ton. I mean LITERALLY a ton – about 2000 pounds! Orcas are sometimes called “killer whales.” They’re actually dolphins – the world’s
LARGEST dolphin. These mammals are huge, about 8 meters long
and weighing about 11 tons. They get their nickname because they are very
successful hunters. Orcas will eat almost anything – seals, sharks,
whales… They can find their prey using ECHOLOCATION
– they make clicks and other sounds, and listen for the echo that bounces back. That tells them which direction to swim. Sort of like a bat, but a giant, killer bat
that lives in the ocean. You can recognize orcas by their distinctive
black and white colouring. It might help them stay camouflaged in the
water – it’s hard to see just where they begin and end. There’s also a tricky part of their colouring
– that giant white spot is not their eye..THAT’s their eye. Orcas work together in family pods of up to
40 animals to chase down their prey. They’re also known to use very clever hunting
techniques. For instance, if they see a seal or other
prey animal on a piece of ice, they swim quickly towards it, making a wave. The wave knocks the seal off the ice into
the water, and bam! The orca gets its dinner. Orcas also sing songs to each other. Probably congratulating themselves on being
excellent hunters. This is a seabird called the Wandering Albatross. It doesn’t actually live IN the ocean, but
it spends almost its whole life flying over the ocean. It has the longest wings of any bird (about
3 meters across). This lets the albatross glide in the air for
hours at a time. It hardly has to flap its wings at all! It does land on the water to eat – picking
off fish, squid, and octopuses. When the wandering albatross finds a mate,
they make a nest on land and take turns keeping their egg warm. Once it hatches and is big enough to leave
the nest, they all return to the water. Is that another HUGE BIRD flying underwater?! No. That’s a MANTA RAY, which is a very unusual-looking
fish. It’s one of the biggest kinds of fish in
the Pacific Ocean, with a wingspan that can get over 7 meters across. The biggest Manta ever caught was over a thousand
kilograms…and by now you might not be surprised that it got that big by eating teeny tiny
plankton. Have we talked about PLANKTON yet? Plankton is not just one kind of animal – it’s
a catch-all name for any tiny organism that lives floating around in the ocean, usually
drifting around the top. This includes small crustaceans, and the eggs
and larvae of bigger animals. Animals that eat plankton, like the Manta
Ray, are filter feeders. They suck in huge quantities of water and
then use baleen or other kinds of toothy combs in their mouth to hold on to their food and
let the water run out. Manta rays like to swim together when they’re
feeding – they really do look like flocks of birds. Is it my imagination, or is he smiling at
us? Or maybe he’s hungry. Good thing we’re too big to be plankton. The GIANT CLAM is the largest mollusk on Earth. It gets over a meter across and can
weigh over 200 kg (more than 400 lbs)! This doesn’t happen overnight. These clams can get over 100 years old. They don’t always look like this, though. For the first 12 hours of their lives, they’re
just fertilized eggs, floating next to their parents. Then they hatch, and are soft larvae, drifting
in the water. Within a few days, they start growing a shell
around themselves. They soon settle down and attach to one spot,
where they will live the rest of their lives. The clams have a symbiotic relationship with
algae – the algae do photosynthesis, and give sugars and proteins to the clam to eat. The giant clam also eats some passing plankton
as a filter feeder. I know what you’re thinking. Is it safe to swim next to a giant clam? Can it trap prey by snapping its giant shell
shut? No. It moves VERY slowly. Since giant clams are cemented in one place,
usually on a coral reef – you might wonder how do they reproduce? Neighboring clams send out swarms of eggs
and sperm that have to run into each other, that’s how. Huh. These were just a few of the amazing animals
living in the Pacific Ocean. Have you seen any of these animals in person? Tell us about it in the comments! We’d love to hear your stories. Now it’s time to watch another great video
about ANIMALS from Socratica Kids. You get to pick!

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