Gervais’ Beaked Whale
Species: Mesoplodon europaeus
4 to 7 m, weighing 600 to 800 kg
About 27 years
A pelagic species, Gervais' Beaked Whale lives offshore and is found in the warm temperate waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
Scientists have little information on its reproduction. It appears that it can have a calf every three years and that it reaches sexual maturity when it reaches a size of about 4.5m.
Gervais' Beaked Whale is a carnivore and feeds on deep-sea squid, some crustaceans and fish.
Morphological characteristics for distinction at sea
- Head: black rimmed eye, no melon/beak demarcations, the male has two small teeth protruding from the lower jaw (just like Cuvier's Beaked Whale males)
- Fins and flippers: small triangular dorsal fin on the last third of the body, short pectoral fins and caudal peduncle with a concave-shaped centre
- Colouring: beige to brown coat, darker ale line
Did you know?
Gervais' Beaked Whale is discreet and very rarely seen.
Banner photo credit: Cédric Millon / OMMAG