Posted by: Loren Coleman on August 18th, 2011
A month ago, Australian officials found a beached whale. They thought it was a minke, but recently announced it was a Cuvier’s beaked whale (Ziphius cavirostris) – one of only four discovered in the past 150 years by the Queensland Museum. Cuvier’s beaked whales are one of 21 known beaked whale species. It is clear that this is only the tip of the iceberg.
Georges Cuvier first described this species in 1823 from part of a skull found in France in 1804. He thought it represented an extinct species — it wasn’t until the 1870s that it was realized the type specimen represented a living species.
Beaked whales, by far, are the most frequent new marine mammal to be discovered. How many are out there?
|English||–||Perrin’s Beaked Whale|
|French||–||Mésoplodon De Perrin|
|Spanish||–||Zifio De Perrin|
Perrin’s beaked whale (Mesoplodon perrini)
For more on the new cetaceans discovered since 2000, see here.
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