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Short-finned pilot whale diving behavior


During naval object recovery tasks in 1970 two captured Pacific short-finned pilot whales were trained to dive more than 500m to the seafloor. During a further voluntary dive, a dive depth of nearly 700m was measured. This was the first dive data obtained for this species. More recent studies reported maximum dive depths of more than 200m for wild short-finned pilot whales off Japan and, most recently, 1,019m (!) during a 21-minute dive off Tenerife, Canary Islands ( / research news from 28.04.2008). Furthermore, these whales were reported to sprint downwards at speeds of 9m per second, apparantly to catch fast moving prey such as giant squids (