Viscera revealed

This morning the internal organs were individually explored. The blood vessels near the heart showed that this whale successfully changed from an intra uterine to extra uterine life (technically, the ductus arteriosus was closed).

The ductus arteriosus is a blood vessel that circulates oxygenated blood received from the mother whale while the baby whale is in the uterus. When the baby whale is born, the lungs take over this function and the ductus arteriosus gradually closes and becomes a part of the ligature.

3 Responses

  1. Jackie

    Thanks for replying! I just thought that maybe the cause of death might have been obvious (obviously not :-) )

    Reply
  2. Anton

    This dissection was to study the anatomy of the whale, if the purpose was to look for cause of death in a specific way we could not have undertaken the work that we have done. To look for cause of death we would really needed to do an examination at the time of death. We can say that it had a couple of broken ribs, but these were unlikely to be the cause of stranding or death in the animal. This animal provided a tremendous amount of information that will go a long way towards a better understanding of the species.

    Reply
  3. Jackie

    Just wondering, have you found a likely cause of death yet?

    Reply

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