The Narwhal or narwhale is a medium size whale that is noted for having the largest canines in the whale species. This large denizen of the deep makes its' home in the Arctic Ocean in the vicinity of the Canadian Arctic waters and Greenland where it lives year-round. Because of it's large canines, this whale is considered to be a uniquely specialized Arctic predator that hunts mostly flatfish at depths of 1500 meters under densely packed ice.
This whale has been hunted for centuries by the Inuit people of this region for its' meat and ivory. The tusks of the narwhal are of high value to collectors of the tusks and of ivory. Today, in Canada it is still legal for the Inuit people to hunt the whales and sell the tusks; however, the United States does not allow the tusks to be imported.
The Maritime Acquarium at Norwalk, located on 10 North Water Street in Norwalk www.maritimeaquarium.org is displaying a rare seven foot narwhal tusk now through April 7. This whale is often referred to as the "unicorn" of the sea because of its' large single spiraling tusk that is now on display for all to see.
There will be a special lecture on April 7 at 8 p.m. by Dr. Martin Nweeia, a Sharon, CT, dentist who is also one of the top narwhal experts in the U.S. Nweeia will share what he’s learned about the purpose and function of narwhal tusks with those attending this interesting lecture. Tickets for the lecture are $10 per person and $8 for Aquarium members.