Whales also get sunburns
London: A study from the University of London has found that even whales suffer the effects of exposure to strong UV rays, such as blisters and sunburns.
The scientists studied more than 150 whales in the Gulf of California and found that the whales had blisters that were caused by sun damage.
The study concluded that darker skinned whales showed fewer signs of sun damage because just like humans, they have more cells that produce a dark brown pigment called melanin.
Laura Martinez-Levasseur explained that whales were good models for this because "they need to come to the surface to breathe air, to socialise and to feed their young, meaning that they are frequently exposed to the full force of the sun," reports the BBC.
"The increase in skin damage seen in blue whales is a matter of concern, but at this stage it is not clear what is causing this increase. A likely candidate is rising ultraviolet radiation as a result of either ozone depletion, or a change in the level of cloud cover,” she said.
This study showed no signs of skin cancer in the whales, but the team are going on to find out how the whales respond to sun damage at a genetic level.
Martinez-Levasseur said, "I hope this will also open the door for other researchers to look into the effects of sun damage on wildlife."
The report appears in the Royal Society journal, Proceedings B.
Download the all new Zee News app for Android and iOS to stay up to date with latest headlines and news stories in Politics, Entertainment, Sports, Technology, Business and much more from India and around the world.
More from India
More from World
More from Sports
More from Entertaiment
- Turkey has the right to defend its airspace, says Obama
- J&K: Terrorists attack Army camp at Tangdhar near LoC
- Proud to be an Indian, no plans to leave the country, says Aamir Khan
- Rahul Gandhi's embarrassment in front of Bengaluru college students
- Panel discussion on Aamir Khan's ignorance on Kashmiri Pandits
- Intolerance issue: Proud to be Indian, won't leave country, says Aamir Khan
- Watch: Chicago cop shoots a 17-year-old black man 16 times
- Army camp attacked in J&K's Kupwara; three JeM terrorists, one civilian killed
- WATCH: Rahul Gandhi asks 'Is Swachh Bharat working', Mount Carmel girls yell 'Yessss'
- Aamir Khan's 12-day mystery: From lauding Modi's 'positive India' to dubbing India as 'intolerant'