The National Wildlife Federation

Donate Donate

Rock-a-Bye Orca

Some babies just never sleep--never!

  • Hannah Schardt
  • Oct 01, 2005
IMAGINE CARING for a baby that just won't go to sleep--for an entire month. That's the tough task of orca and bottlenose dolphin mothers, according to University of California–Los Angeles/Veterans Affairs researchers. Unlike other mammals, newborn orcas and bottlenoses are active 24 hours a day for their first month, probably to keep warm and avoid predators. Their mothers also stay awake--and surprisingly alert. Later, when the mothers start to return to their normal sleep schedules, their offspring often stay up but stick close to mom.

Get Involved

   Please leave this field empty

Where We Work

More than one-third of U.S. fish and wildlife species are at risk of extinction in the coming decades. We're on the ground in seven regions across the country, collaborating with 52 state and territory affiliates to reverse the crisis and ensure wildlife thrive.

Learn More
Regional Centers and Affiliates