A lost narwhal has found its forever home after being adopted by these lovable Beluga whales.

GREMM

After 3 years, they’re ready to make it official: this adorable group of marine buddies has staying power.

The Group for Research and Education on Marine Mammals (GREMM), a non-profit focused on whale research and conservation has been monitoring the seemingly strange bonding, in which a group of young Beluga whales have adopted a narwhal that appears to have gotten lost after wandering into Canada’s St. Lawrence River.

"It behaves like it was one of the boys," said GREMM President and Scientific Director Robert Michaud. "They are in constant contact with each other."


Sometimes referred to as “the unicorns of the sea,” narwhals are famous for their “teeth,” a tusk that can grow up to eight feet long.

GREMM has been monitoring the group for three years via a drone and noticed them playing and traveling together. The two species are closely related genetically but Michaud says they have substantial differences, such as feeding habits and habitat preferences.

However, the narwhal is showing signs of behavioral adaptation, even blowing bubbles near the surface of the water, like its Beluga buddies.

Both species are also very social, which can sometimes be a problem. For example, Michaud said that other wandering narwhals have gotten into accidents, sometimes fatal, when they tried to befriend humans or boats.

"That little narwhal that made a similar trip was very lucky," he said. "Because he found almost normal buddies."

Narwhals: They’re just like us.

OK, not really. But the unusual bonding display is a nice change of pace in a news cycle that seems to exclusively focus on what separates all creatures and things from each other.

For their part, Belugas are highly regarded for their social and even compassionate nature. If that sounds like a stretch, consider this example of a Beluga showing unbelievable tolerance toward Justin Bieber:

Photo by Bob Couey/SeaWorld San Diego via Getty Images.

Maybe letting a lonely narwhal hang out with your boys isn't such a great sacrifice when you think of it that way.

It’s a point that Harvard researcher Martin Nweeia couldn’t help but notice, telling the CBC:

"I think it shows … the compassion and the openness of other species to welcome another member that may not look or act the same. And maybe that's a good lesson for everyone."

Most Shared
Courtesy of Houseplant.

In America, one dumb mistake can hang over your head forever.

Nearly 30% of the American adult population — about 70 million people — have at least one criminal conviction that can prevent them from being treated equally when it comes to everything from job and housing opportunities to child custody.

Twenty million of these Americans have felony convictions that can destroy their chances of making a comfortable living and prevents them from voting out the lawmakers who imprisoned them.

Many of these convictions are drug-related and stem from the War on Drugs that began in the U.S. '80s. This war has unfairly targeted the minority community, especially African-Americans.

Keep Reading Show less
Culture

Climate change is happening because the earth is warming at an accelerated rate, a significant portion of that acceleration is due to human activity, and not taking measures to mitigate it will have disastrous consequences for life as we know it.

In other words: Earth is heating up, it's kinda our fault, and if we don't fix it, we're screwed.

This is the consensus of the vast majority of the world's scientists who study such things for a living. Case closed. End of story.

How do we know this to be true? Because pretty much every reputable scientific organization on the planet has examined and endorsed these conclusions. Thousands of climate studies have been done, and multiple peer-reviewed studies have been done on those studies, showing that somewhere between 84 and 97 percent of active climate science experts support these conclusions. In fact, the majority of those studies put the consensus well above 90%.

Keep Reading Show less
Nature
via James Anderson

Two years ago, a tweet featuring the invoice for a fixed boiler went viral because the customer, a 91-year-old woman with leukemia, received the services for free.

"No charge for this lady under any circumstances," the invoice read. "We will be available 24 hours to help her and keep her as comfortable as possible."

The repair was done by James Anderson, 52, a father-of-five from Burnley, England. "James is an absolute star, it was overwhelming to see that it cost nothing," the woman's daughter told CNN.

Keep Reading Show less
Heroes

I live in a family with various food intolerances. Thankfully, none of them are super serious, but we are familiar with the challenges of finding alternatives to certain foods, constantly checking labels, and asking restaurants about their ingredients.

In our family, if someone accidentally eats something they shouldn't, it's mainly a bit of inconvenient discomfort. For those with truly life-threatening food allergies, the stakes are much higher.

I can't imagine the ongoing stress of deadly allergy, especially for parents trying to keep their little ones safe.

Keep Reading Show less
popular