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Beluga whales are entirely arctic and subarctic. They inhabit the Arctic Ocean and its adjoining seas. During certain times of the year they are also found in large rivers. A beluga’s “melon” is a rounded structure on the dorsal surface of a whale's head, just in front of the blowhole. The melon probably facilitates sound production. It changes shape when the whale is producing sounds. Aside from the narwhal (another arctic species), beluga whales are the only other member of the Monodontidae whale family.