beluga

noun
be·​lu·​ga | \ bə-ˈlü-gə How to pronounce beluga (audio) \

Definition of beluga

1 : a large white sturgeon (Huso huso synonym Acipenser huso) of the Black Sea, Caspian Sea, and their tributaries also : caviar processed from beluga roe — compare osetra, sevruga
2 [ Russian belukha, from belyĭ ] : a toothed whale (Delphinapterus leucas) of arctic and subarctic waters having a fusiform body that is about 10 to 15 feet (3.0 to 5.0 meters) long and white when mature

called also white whale

Illustration of beluga

Illustration of beluga

beluga 2

Examples of beluga in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Aquarium officials say the data collected from the observation is shared with others who study wild beluga whale populations. chicagotribune.com, "Shedd Aquarium officials determine the sex of newborn Beluga whale," 17 July 2019 Aquarium officials say the data collected from the observation is shared with others who study wild beluga whale populations. USA TODAY, "Saving whales, Manson murder house: News from around our 50 states," 17 July 2019 Below us is Fram Strait, a deep ocean channel and one of the Arctic’s richest feeding grounds, where narwhals, bowhead whales, and beluga whales gather each spring to feast at the ice edge. Christian Åslund, National Geographic, "Melting ice may be a boon for some Arctic whales—then a bust," 2 July 2019 The Shedd’s largest beluga, a male named Aurek, is about 14 feet and 2,100 lbs. Steve Johnson, chicagotribune.com, "Shedd Aquarium beluga gives birth to healthy calf," 4 July 2019 Female killer whales, as well as narwhals and short-finned pilot and beluga whales, are the only other animals who go through menopause. Darcey Steinke, Time, "No One Told Me Exactly What to Expect From Menopause. But the Messages I Did Get Were Very Wrong," 28 June 2019 Russia frees whales: Russia released back into the wild two killer whales and six beluga whales — the first group of almost 100 whales whose capture in the Far East last year caused an international outcry. Washington Post, "World Digest: June 27, 2019," 27 June 2019 In Canada, only two facilities keep cetaceans: Marineland, in Ontario, which has more than 50 beluga whales, according to CTV News, and the Vancouver Aquarium, which has one dolphin. Anchorage Daily News, "With ‘Free Willy’ bill, Canada bans captivity and breeding of whales and dolphins," 11 June 2019 In late July, another group will head to Churchill, Manitoba, to spot beluga whales in Hudson Bay and look for polar bears roaming the shore on a trip led by Steven Aibel, Shedd’s senior director of marine mammals (starting at $3,995). Linda Lombardi, chicagotribune.com, "3 epic aquatic adventures across the U.S., including indoor swimming with whale sharks," 11 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'beluga.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of beluga

1591, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for beluga

Russian, from belyĭ white; akin to Greek phalios having a white spot — more at bald

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Last Updated

28 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for beluga

The first known use of beluga was in 1591

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with beluga

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about beluga

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