Summer molting of bowhead whales Balaena mysticetus Linnaeus, 1758, of the Okhotsk Sea population
In bowhead whales summering in Ulbanskiy Bay of the Okhotsk Sea, molting of epidermis has been found and histologically confirmed. The outer layer of the molting whale epidermis is longitudinally stratified and rejected in the form of relatively large plates up to several millimeters thick, each representing a lamellar formation consisting of longitudinal rows of parakeratocytes with degenerated nuclei, numerous pigment granules, and lipid inclusions. Molting intensity is correlated with the level of proliferation and regeneration of all epidermal layers, which helps to maintain the optimal skin thickness.
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