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The common minke whale or northern minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) is a species of minke whale within the suborder of baleen whales. It is the smallest member of the rorquals and the second smallest species of baleen whale. Although first ignored by whalers due to its small size and low oil yield, it began to be exploited by various countries beginning in the early 20th century. As other species declined larger numbers of common minke whales were caught, largely for their meat. It is now one of the primary targets of the whaling industry. There is a dwarf form in the Southern Hemisphere.