The sperm whale, the world’s largest carnivore, star of a New Caledonian adventure film


One day, Chloé Glad read a book by François Sarano, oceanographer and sperm whale specialist, and finds herself immersed in the world of sperm whales. ” It is a fascinating species! I discovered that there were some in New Caledonia and that aroused my curiosity. I said to myself: “it would be great to go get them” », Recalls the director. The great sperm whale is a kind of large toothed whale whose size makes it the largest carnivore in the world. Extremely hunted for their oil, sperm whales are now protected and their capture is highly regulated. If it is present in New Caledonia, few people know it.

The first explanation is the lack of knowledge off the coast of Caillou and therefore of the habitat of the sperm whale. The lack of specific work on this species is also a factor. ” There has never been any research specifically devoted to sperm whales. Its habitat is remote and therefore less accessible. It’s a logistical problem since it requires a significant budget, organization, going out to sea every day … “, Explains the director of the film” Code Coda “.

In order to support the knowledge of the territory on this mammal, Chloé Glad decided to go to meet it in Caledonian waters with a team of 9 scientists. ” We left for two weeks aboard the Caledonian catamaran Nirvana “.

More than 1,000 km traveled

The objective of the expedition was therefore to find and observe sperm whales in order to learn a little more about these little-known cetaceans which quietly frequent, but always, Caledonian waters. ” We also wanted to have information on their ecology », Specifies Chloé Glad. From this expedition was produced the film “Code Coda”. ” Its name comes from the codas which are the sounds produced by sperm whales when they are in groups and socialize. “. And to add that ” by giving this name to the expedition, it was a way of attracting luck! “.

The team of scientists will have traveled more than 1,000 km, off the west coast of Grande Terre. “ Of the 85 plays made, 19 were positive. We were able to observe 8 different species including the sperm whale “. On the program of this adventure film, images and behind the scenes of the expedition in search of gentle giants. ” Through the (re) discovery of a species unknown to the general public, this film also wants to be a cry of alarm for the conservation of the oceans. It is the human who rubs shoulders with untamed nature, and who remembers that it is essential to his humanity. », Can we read in the press kit.

The characteristics of the sperm whale

Longevity: We estimate the life expectancy of a sperm whale at 70 years.

Body: The male measures between 15 and 18 m and the female between 10 and 13 m. It is the world’s largest carnivore and has the heaviest brain in the animal kingdom. Its body is greyish and its head, whose shape is parallelepiped, represents one third of the body mass.

Weight: Between 45 and 55 tonnes for males, 10 and 15 tonnes for females.

Food: Mainly large squids (80% cephalopods).

Hugo Coëff for Actu.nc



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