minke whale

noun
min·​ke whale | \ ˈmiŋ-kə- How to pronounce minke whale (audio) \
variants: or less commonly minke

Definition of minke whale

: a small gray to black baleen whale (genus Balaenoptera) with a whitish underside and a relatively narrow, pointed snout:
a : one (B. acutorostrata) chiefly of the northern hemisphere

called also common minke whale, northern minke whale

b : one (B. bonaerensis) of the southern hemisphere that was formerly classified in the same species as the northern form

called also Antarctic minke, southern minke whale

— see rorqual

Illustration of minke whale

Illustration of minke whale

Examples of minke whale in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

For the first time in over 30 years, two minke whales were harpooned by Japanese whaling boats and brought back to port for commercial purposes. Claudia Harmata, PEOPLE.com, "Japan Resumes Commercial Whaling After Three-Decade Break and Kills Two Whales on the First Day," 3 July 2019 The two minke whales that were harpooned are the first to be killed by Japan for commercial purposes in more than 30 years. Ivan Watson And Michelle Lou, CNN, "Commercial whaling has been banned for three decades. Japan just resumed it with two kills," 2 July 2019 Type A killer whales look similar to typical orcas (which are found worldwide), but mainly feed on minke whales; type Bs are smaller and many eat seals; type Cs go after fish. Douglas Main, National Geographic, "Mysterious new orca species likely identified," 7 Mar. 2019 LaCasse said minke whales are commonly seen in New England, especially along Stellwagen Bank. Elise Takahama, BostonGlobe.com, "Dead whale spotted at Wollaston Beach in Quincy," 18 May 2018 Out of San Francisco, the Ocean Society made a trip to the Farallon Islands and sighted 15 humpback whales, five blue whales, one minke whale, 70 Risso’s dolphins, five northern right whale dolphins, and 80 Pacific white-sided dolphins. Tom Stienstra, SFChronicle.com, "Chart-buster times: salmon to whales, bears to bighorns," 8 July 2018 The National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration declared an unusual mortality event for minke whales this year, LaCasse said. Elise Takahama, BostonGlobe.com, "Dead whale spotted at Wollaston Beach in Quincy," 18 May 2018 Japanese hunters caught and killed 122 pregnant minke whales during the annual summer hunt off the coast of Antarctica last year, a report has found. Casey Quackenbush, Time, "Japanese Hunters Kill 122 Pregnant Minke Whales for 'Scientific Research'," 31 May 2018 Figures show that 128 of the 333 minke whales caught during the 12-week expedition in the Southern Ocean were female. Bard Wilkinson, CNN, "Japanese hunters kill 120 pregnant minke whales," 30 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of minke whale

1939, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for minke whale

partial translation of Norwegian minkehval, from minke- (perhaps from Meincke, a crewman of Svend Foyn †1894 Norwegian whaler) + hval whale

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about minke whale

Dictionary Entries near minke whale

minivet

mink

minkery

minke whale

mink frog

Minkopi

Minn

Statistics for minke whale

Last Updated

8 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for minke whale

The first known use of minke whale was in 1939

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on minke whale

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about minke whale

Comments on minke whale

What made you want to look up minke whale? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

having no luck

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

What's that Smell?! Quiz

  • wide eyed dog smelling rose
  • Someone who is hircine smells like a:
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!