If a whale's spout has so much water, is there sea water in her lungs? And fish?

You see a waterspout and it seems to expell a lot of volume, not a little mist.

Whouldn’t they catch pneumatic diseases, not to mention the occassional crawdad clawing to get out.

No, whales do not have sea water in their lungs. What they exhale is condensation, same as you (when you go “hoooo” on a mirror). When they exhale forcefully under the surface of the water, it shoots out a little spout of seawater along with it, but it’s not from their lungs.

And no, they don’t have fish in their lungs, either.

That’s cute the way you refer to the whale as a “her.” Funny, I’ve always thought of whales as being feminine too. There she blows! :slight_smile:

Anyway, I think Melville mentions in Moby Dick that the area on top of the sperm whale’s head near the blowhole is concave like a bowl so it tends to hold a lot of seawater even when the whale is above the surface. So when the whale releases the air from her lungs, it tends to mix with the water and form a spray.

So whales AREN’T hollow inside, like in the cartoons? I’m so disillusioned. :slight_smile:

Makes ya wonder about Jonah, too, doesn’t it?

If you’re interested in whale anatomy, Moby Dick is indeed a great source. There are about fifteen chapters in the middle where Melville apparently said to himself, “Arrr, this tale of adventure and madness on the high seas is just too interesting. I thinks I’ll try to bore the reader to tears by discussing the anatomy of the whale for about six hundred pages. Arrr.”