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Whales: Sleep

© written by Tasha Guenther

Three whales sleeping

Photographer: Krissa Corbett Cavouras; used with permission under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

As most of us have probably wondered, do whales sleep? And if so, how?

Though sometimes we take this for granted, we must remember that, though mammals, whales are not like us! They do not need sleep the way we need sleep - it simply does not make sense within their oceanic environments.

Therefore, it has been observed that whales sleep in small, rapid segments, as seen in the above image. For example, the Sperm whale will suspend itself in the water for small periods of time (usually under 15 minutes). It is about as neat as it looks!