The allometric growth pattern of 666 common minke whales (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) collected in the North Pacific was investigated by comparing skull length and skull width with body length. For comparison, skull length and skull width in relation to body length were analyzed in 3 Balaenopteridae species (B. musclus, B. physalus, and B. borealis). The generalized linear model was adapted for evaluating the effects of sex and sexual maturity status on growth patterns. The skull proportion of large Balaenoptera whales (B. musculus and B. physalus) showed positive allometry, but that of the common minke whale showed negative allometry, despite being related species. Such differences in intraspecific growth patterns could be the result of adaptation driven by feeding strategy.
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Vol. 37 • No. 2