"Blow" of the Pilot Whale

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Science  28 Feb 1969:
Vol. 163, Issue 3870, pp. 953-955
DOI: 10.1126/science.163.3870.953


A captive pilot whale emptied as much as 88 percent of lung gas passively, without the aid of expiratory muscles. Level or decreasing pressures in the esophagus during expiration, and in the blowhole at the onset of expiration, revealed the driving force of expiration to be solely elastic recoil. Active muscular reexpansion of the lungs ensued immediately. Expiration and inspiration were completed in about I second.

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