The Antarctic minke whale is usually found alone or in pairs, although aggregations of hundreds of whales can gather in feeding grounds (7) (11). This species’ diet consists mainly of krill (6), and it may in turn be preyed upon by orcas (Orcinus orca) (12).
The Antarctic minke whale reaches sexual maturity at 7 to 8 years old, and it has a lifespan of approximately 50 years (11). This species mates over the winter. The female undergoes a ten month gestation period, usually giving birth to a single calf, although twins and triplets may sometimes occur. The calf usually suckles for five months before being weaned, and will remain with the female for up to two years (9).
The Antarctic minke whale can swim at speeds of up to 20 kilometres per hour and can dive for up to 20 minutes at a time, although its dives usually last just a few minutes (9) (11). It is an inquisitive species, known to frequently approach boats (6).