Our Latest News

Easter safety is paramount for our parks and reserves

18/04/2019

The Parks and Wildlife Service encourages visitors and Tasmanians alike to get outdoors and get active - especially in our parks and reserves.More

Good news, Hartz Mountain National Park and other tracks are open!

17/04/2019

In time for Easter walking, PWS have been able to re-open a number of tracks.More

New Mt Mawson Shelter officially opened ahead of ski season

29/03/2019

The new Mt Mawson Public Shelter was today officially opened and will provide a new level of amenity for southern Tasmania's only ski field, as well as upgraded facilities for bushwalkers heading to the iconic Tarn Shelf walk in Mt Field National Park.More

Hectors Beaked Whale

Drawing by Graham Sanders
Hectors Beaked Whale is similar in size to a Bottle-nosed Dolphin and is the smallest of the beaked whales. They reach around 4.5m in length but up to 1ton in weight. They are dark brown/grey above and pale underneath extending up to a white lower jaw. Males also have white under their flukes and a can have a white naval area. Males also have two small flattened triangular teeth near the lower jaw tip. They have a small, round- tipped dorsal fin and short flippers and often have scarring on the sides of males. They are rarely spotted at sea because they do not blow on the surface and are quite slow moving so are difficult to detect.

General Information

Distribution map of sightings and strandings (click to enlarge)
They are a deep oceanic species that feed on squid. They usually occur singly although sometimes two animals have been observed swimming together. Newborns are around 1.8m in length. Their lifecycle is unknown. They are considered a southern hemisphere cool temperate species.

Stranding Information

Records of these animals are generally from dead animals washed onto beaches from South Australia, Tasmania and New Zealand. A DNA sample was collected from a free swimming whale off Western Australia.