There are many animals and creatures, but very few start with the letter N! No sea creature is as fascinating as the Narwhal, the unicorn of the sea. Let’s explore fun facts about Narwhals and combine them with STEAM-inspired Narwhal activities. The narwhal is a fantastic ocean animal to learn about during any ocean theme lesson plan!
What is a Narwhal?
Narwhals are fascinating creatures that live in the icy waters of the Arctic. They are often called the “unicorns of the sea” because of their long, spiral tusk that can grow up to 10 feet long. Despite their name, narwhals are a type of whale, not mythical creatures.
What Color is a Narwhal?
Narwhals have a unique appearance with mottled gray skin and a dorsal fin set far back on their bodies. Their streamlined shape helps them swim gracefully through cold ocean waters.
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Do Narwhals Exist Today?
Yes, they do! Where do narwhals live? Icy cold, Canada, Greenland, Norway, and Russia’s Arctic waters are preferred Narwhal habitats. They can spend up to five months under the sea ice in the Baffin Bay-Davis Strait area (between Canada and western Greenland).
Fun Facts About Narwhals
>A Narwhal is a species of whale related to the Beluga and Orca.
>Female Narwhals give birth to a baby Narwhal called a calf once every three years. It is around 5 feet long when born.
>Narwhals live and swim around the Arctic Circle.
How Long is a Narwhal?
>Narwhals can be up to 20 feet long and weigh a ton.
What Does the Narwhal Eat?
>Narwhals eat fish, shrimp, and squid. They are carnivores.
>The spiral horn/tusk is actually a tooth and can get up to 10 feet long on males. Females usually have one but can have a short one.
>Narwhals only have two teeth. One of which protrudes, forming the tusk.
>The tusks are covered in tiny holes and have tons of nerve endings. The holes let in seawater, but there is no concrete evidence as to the use of the tusk.
>A group of Narwhals swimming together is called a pod.
>Narwhals will often swim on their bellies.
>Narwhals communicate with a series of clicks and whistles.
>Narwhals can live up to 50 years old.
>Narwhals are also called moon whales.
Why Do Narwhals Have a Horn?
Narwhals are not real-life unicorns but have a horn or tusk, which is the more accurate term. There’s not a lot of concrete evidence about this tusk, but it is thought to be more of a tool for sensing the environment than fighting. Detecting prey, water temperature, salt content, and other things, the tusk does help the narwhal survive.
Now that you have learned a little about the Narwhal, Unicorn of the Sea, or Moon Whale, let’s try some fun STEM-inspired Narwhal activities!
- Narwhal Fun Facts
- Narwhal Word Search
- Narwhal Crossword Puzzle
- Feed the Narwhal Activity
- Narwhal Anatomy
Narwhal Blubber Science Experiment
Learn about how whale blubber works! This fun and easy whale blubber science experiment will help your kids understand how whales stay warm in cold ocean water! Find out how blubber stores energy, helps with buoyancy, insulates, and more!
Narwhal Collage Craft Project
Create art with a free printable narwhal craft template.
Narwhal Video for Kids
View the Narwhals in action! Check out this quick video to see Narwhals in their ocean habitat.
Make a LEGO Narwhal
Build your own Narwhal. We chose to make a LEGO Narwhal for our Narwhal STEM activity time.
HOW TO BUILD A LEGO NARWHAL WITH KIDS
Start with this simple to build a whale body using basic bricks and a few sloped bricks if you have them. We had a few blue flat pieces we added because we had them handy. Building up a LEGO collection takes some time but can be done affordably!
BUILD THE UNICORN TUSK OR HORN!
These are the pieces we used to be able to center the tusk and allow it to come out at an angle. A hinged piece or even a bracket piece works well topped with a one stud centerpiece. We made our tusk out of tiny rounds and finished it with a 1×1 LEGO cone piece.
How Long Is a Narwhal Activity
Head outdoors and measure out a 15 or 20-foot-long Narwhal with a tape measure and chalk. Next, measure out a Narwhal calf next to it, about 5 feet. Now lay down at one end of the mark and have a friend or parent help you mark how many of your body lengths equal the length of a Narwhal. You could also use your foot or hand, but that will take a while. Do the same for the calf!
Tip: There are so many easy ways to combine math with science and art for STEAM!
Spend some time and learn more about this mysterious sea creature. We think they are pretty fascinating. What else can you find out about them?
Grab this free Narwhal Facts for Kids Research Page!
Extend the learning and download this free printable narwhal facts research page for kids who want to learn more about these cool creatures.
Learn More About Ocean Animals
Do you have kids who love to learn about the ocean and all the ocean animals in it? Check out these ocean animal activities for more fantastic learning ideas.