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Pictured: The beluga whale that blows bubbles and juggles


By Daily Mail Reporter

Last updated at 11:45 AM on 28th July 2008


Like children blowing little bubbles through rings, these beluga whales are astounding onlookers by learning to blow bubbles of air underwater.


The whales have delighted thousands of visitors since being taught the impressive trick by scuba divers in a pool.


They are given a breath from the diver's regulator to give them enough air to blow the big bubbles.



Enlarge article-0-02158D4C00000578-5_468x337.jpg Party trick: A beluga whale performing at the Aquas aquarium in Hamada, south-west of Tokyo

Following a clap from their instructor they exhale the air, about 30cm (12in) wide, towards a glass wall. They also sometimes direct the bubble right at members of the audience standing by the glass.


The three belugas form a group as the diver blows air out of his regulator for them to draw into their lungs.

The act also includes juggling balls, twisting around and swimming through hoops at the Aquas aquarium in Hamada, 700km (434 miles) south-west of Tokyo.

Beluga whales live only in the cold waters of the Arctic Ocean and are regarded as threatened.



Enlarge article-1039137-02158CD100000578-423_468x380.jpg The whales have delighted thousands of visitors this summer, including this young girl



Enlarge article-1039137-02158D5800000578-43_468x320.jpg Their impressive tricks are taught by scuba divers


Their natural predators are orcas and polar bears, but North American native tribes are also allowed to kill a limited number.

There are 400 other aquatic species that live in the aquarium, the biggest in central Japan.

The whales can live for 25 to 30 years and reach about 4.8m (16ft).

The famed delicacy beluga caviar does not come from the whales but the beluga sturgeon, which is found in the Black Sea.

The name beluga means white in Russian.

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