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Gray's Beaked Whale

marine life of Namibia

Introduction: Gray's beaked whale (Mesoplodon grayi) is a very gregarious mammal that has a habit of stranding in larger groups, sometimes as many as 20 individuals, but between 5 and 8 are more common. It is slender in size, unusual for this genus and the beak is very long and pointed for such a whale, with a relatively straight mouth line. A feature of this whale is holding prey in the upper teeth, otherwise it isn't clear why this species has them.

Distribution: Confined to waters deeper than 1,800m off the coast of Namibia from the south as far north as Walvis Bay and Swakopmund.

Diet: Fish and squid.

Colouring: Dark slate-grey head, body and flanks and a paler grey on the sides and underparts. There is a distinctive dark streak down the middle of the belly and the outer surface of the flippers are dark. Pure white upper jaw and lips slope down to the eyes to form a v-shape.

Breeding: Calves are 2.4m long when born.

Size: Grows to a maximum of 5.7m in length. Weight: 1,100kg.

Marine Life | Namibia

  • Namibia Marine Life: Grays Beaked Whale
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