Adult Male © Phil Coles

Quick Facts
Length Around 7m Distribution
Probably circumpolar in the cold temperate waters of the Southern hemisphere.
Weight 6-8 tons Identification
Large size and rotund body, large bulbous melon curving out over short sturdy beak. Paler melon.
Diet Deep sea fish and squid Threats Unknown.
Group size 1-25, usually less than 10  

Unlike its congener the northern bottle-nosed whale (Hyperoodon ampullatus) which is one of the best studied beaked whales, the life of the southern bottle-nosed whale is virtually unknown. Ranging from Antarctic waters North to New Zealand, Australia, South Africa and Brazil, it appears to be a quite widespread species and to be at least partly migratory. Specimens from South Africa have been found with the remains of sub-Antarctic squid species in their stomachs and cold-water diatoms on their skin suggesting a recent arrival from higher latitudes. What little is known about the natural history of this species may also be clouded by misidentification particularly in the Indian and Southern Pacific oceans where Longman’s beaked whale (Indopacetus pacificus), whose appearance has only recently been described but which is similar to southern bottle-nosed whale in many features, is found.

All rights reserved. No part of this web site may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording without the prior permission of Organisation Cetacea. For Trade enquiries on any Organisation Cetacea report or newsletter please e-mail the ORCA Secretary. For general enquiries please e-mail the ORCA Webmaster. Organisation cetacea is a registered charity no 1098765.