T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Whale (Andrews' beaked) Mesoplodon bowdoini

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla
Infraorder: Cetacea
Family: Ziphiidae
Genus: Mesoplodon
Species: M. bowdoini
Binomial name: Mesoplodon bowdoini
Common name: Andrews' beaked whale, Deep-crest beaked whale, Splay-toothed whale 

Andrews' beaked whale (Mesoplodon bowdoini), is one of the most poorly known members of the genus (Mesoplodon). There have been no confirmed sightings at sea, and hence no population genetic analyses have been done. The Andrews' beaked whale is known only from a few dozens stranding records between 32°S and 55°S, over half are from New Zealand.  
The species was first described in 1908 by the American scientist Roy Chapman Andrews from a specimen collected at New Brighton Beach, Canterbury Province, New Zealand, in 1904. 
The calving season is thought to be during summer and autumn off New Zealand and Tasmania. Otherwise, any behaviour is completely unknown. 
There have been 35 stranded specimens studied. Andrews' beaked whale can obtain a length of 4.8 m and can weigh 2600 kg.  The body of Andrews' beaked whale is rather robust in comparison with other members of the genus. The blunt, tipped dorsal fin of this species is rather small for its body size and is situated on the middle of the back.

The melon is rather low, and the beak is short and thick. The lower jaw is fairly peculiar in that halfway through it rises up significantly with the teeth extending over the rostrum (beak). The head also sometimes has a light patch on the sides, it is more prominent in the males. The male is overall dark grey to black and it has a lighter "saddle" marking between the blowhole and dorsal fin on its back. Males also carry scars typical of the genus. Females are slate grey with greyish-white flanks and belly. Cookie cutter shark bites are present in both genders. The young are believed to be around 2.2 meters long when born.

A neonatal Andrews' Beaked Whale beach washed. The identity was established by DNA analysis.






This graphic shows the size of an Andrews' beaked whale in comparison with a human.


The blue shows the estimated range of Andrews' beaked whale.

Thanks to Wikipedia for text and information: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/