Project Description


Size: up to 10 metres
Weight: up to 8 tonnes
Speed: up to 34 km/hour

Minke whales are the second smallest baleen whale in the world. They have a characteristic white band on each flipper, contrasting with their dark gray top color. They have around 300 pairs of baleen plates in their upper jaw which act like a strainer as the minke whales feeds.

Around the world they are the most abundant baleen whale yet they remain mostly solitary, often traveling alone or in small pods of 2-3 animals. Recent environmental changes seem to have influenced their distribution around Iceland as less and less minke whales are found in the costal waters. Despite these changes minke whales are commercially hunted in Icelandic waters, mainly in south west Iceland.

Minke whales can be inquisitive and approach vessels quite closely. They are most commonly seen on whale watching tours in south Iceland in summer months (March/April to September/October) but also quite regularly on tours from north and west Iceland around the same time.