Perrin's beaked whale

Perrin's beaked whale

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Genus
SPECIES
Mesoplodon perrini
LENGTH
2.10-4.43 m

Perrin's beaked whale is part of the toothed whale suborder and is one of over 90 known cetaceans in existence today. Beaked whales are part of the family Ziphiidae, which are the second most diverse group out of all marine mammals with over 20 species currently recognized. Although diverse, little is understood about these timid, deep divers that can dive for up to two hours. The whales are partially named after their beak shaped jaw, which extends from their small head. The genus name Mesoplodon comes from the Greek meanings of meso-, - hopla, - odon, and may be translated as 'armed with a tooth in the center of the jaw'. Perrin's beaked whale was described as a new species in 2002 by Dalebout et al. based on five animals stranding on the coast of California between 1975 and 1997, which were initially identified as other species. The common and specific names of Mesopledon perrini are a tribute to cetologist William F. Perrin. As of May 2019, only six specimens have ever been examined. The first two specimens were found stranded on the California coast in May 1975, other specimens were found in 1978, 1979, September 1997, and October 2013. The first four individuals were initially identified as Hector's beaked whales, but the mtDNA sequence database of beaked whales revealed the specimens were genetically distinct. The fifth was assumed to be a neonate Cuvier's beaked whale .

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Distribution

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Perrin's beaked whale habitat map

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References

1. Perrin's beaked whale Wikipedia article - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perrin's_beaked_whale
2. Perrin's beaked whale on The IUCN Red List site - https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/41759/50383813

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