From: Alicia Graef, Care2, More from this Affiliate
Published May 17, 2017 07:18 AM

Rare Footage Helps Explain What Narwhals Use Their Tusks For

Scientists are marveling over never-before-seen footage of narwhals that has brought to light new evidence for what those unicorn-like tusks are actually used for.

Narwhals are toothed whales who live in the Arctic waters of Canada, Greenland, Norway and Russia, but they don’t actually have any teeth in their mouth. Instead, the males grow a long straight tooth, or tusk, that spirals out of their upper left jaw that can grow as long as nine feet. This long, spiraled tusk is a unique feature that has gotten them dubbed ‘unicorns of the sea,’ but there’s been a lot of speculation about what they’re for and how they’re used.

Now, newly released drone footage taken in Tremblay Sound in northeastern Canada has offered some new insight.

The footage captured narwhals using their tusks to tap and stun Arctic cod before eating them, and is the first recorded evidence that they use their tusks to hunt.

Continue reading at ENN affiliate, Care2.

Photo credit: NOAA

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