A whale of a tail

He recalled a whale in a similar predicament on the East Coast, nicknamed “Long John Silver” after the peg-legged pirate, who was seen a year later with a calf; they shortened the name to “Silver” to reflect that the whale was female. While the whale can survive, the tail is the major source of speed and maneuverability, the “engine in the back,” said Lyman, and it could impact the whale’s ability to catch food.