Our Latest News

New lease of life for original lighthouse vents

15/05/2018

As part of the ongoing conservation of the Cape Bruny and Maatsuyker Island lighthouses, a team effort has been underway to restore the original bronze vents from the lighthouses' lantern rooms.More

Record visitor numbers at Highfield Historic Site

09/05/2018

Visitation numbers at Highfield Historic Site in Stanley have reached a record high, with 12,535 people visiting in the 12 months ending March 2018.More

Cradle Mountain shuttle bus tender awarded

08/05/2018

A new bus fleet featuring environmentally friendly technology and vehicles with improved accessibility and increased capacity will help to meet increasing visitor numbers following the awarding of the tender to McDermott Coaches.More

Dense-beaked Whale

Drawing by Graham Sanders
Blainsvilles or the Dense-beaked Whale is generally grey-brown above and lighter underneath. Adults have a darker dorsal fin and large spots all over the body. In the female the beak is very white. The lower jaw is quite arched and has a prominent tooth in the males that can be encrusted with barnacles. This makes them look like they have two dark pompoms on the head making males easily identified at sea.

General Information

Males can reach up to 6m in length with females slightly
Distribution map of sightings and strandings (click to enlarge)
smaller and have a maximum weight of 1 tonne. Newborns are less than 2m. They are mature at about 4.5m when they are around ten years of age. Mostly they occur in groups of 3-7. On surfacing they will extend their beak and sometimes slap it in the water. They are more likely to approach vessels than other beaked whales.

Stranding Information

Only a few strandings of Dense-beaked Whales have been recorded from Australia with Queensland having seven and most states having at least one recording. Tasmania to date (2013) has had two, including one male animal at Marrawah. More strandings occur in South Africa. They seem to prefer tropical waters and are circumglobal - making them the most widely distributed of the beaked whales. They are seen more often than other beaked whales closer to the coast.