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PWS Fire Update - Friday 15 February 2019

15/02/2019

Parks and Wildlife Tasmania (PWS) can advise the following locations, reserves and tracks have been re-opened today (Friday 15 February).More

PWS Fire Update - Thursday 14 February 2019

14/02/2019

Parks and Wildlife Tasmania (PWS) can advise the following locations, reserves and tracks have been re-opened.More

PWS Fire Update - Monday 11 February 2019

11/02/2019

As a result of the emergency service suppression efforts and calmer weather conditions over recent days, PWS can advise the following changes to track openings and closures.More

True's Beaked Whale

Drawing by Graham Sanders
True's Beaked Whales in the southern hemisphere are dark grey/brown above and pale grey underneath with dark eye patches. The lower jaw and cheeks are pale grey to whitish in colour with black lips. In the southern hemisphere the rear part of the body is white with the upper part of the tail flukes being dark grey. Adults reach 5.3m in length and weigh 1.5 tonnes. They have rounded bodies, short fins and a small head with a short cone-shaped beak and rounded melon. Males have a single pair of teeth right at the tip of the jaw. The slightly hooked dorsal fin is about two thirds along the back and the flippers are rounded. These whales are rarely sighted with the first live sighting not recorded until 1995. These three animals had a typical blow and roll sequence lasting about 10 seconds bringing the the rostrum clear first followed by the head to eye level before rolling under. The blow is indistinct.

General Information

Only discovered in 1913, True was so excited he named them mirus meaning wonderful. They occur in cool temperate deep oceanic waters and generally feed on squid and fish. There appear to be two distinct subgroups – those found in northern North Atlantic and those in southern parts of the Indian and Pacific Oceans. They are around 2.2m long at birth. However little is known about their lifecycle.

Stranding Information

True's Beaked Whales are rarely seen and most information comes from rare strandings of single dead specimens. Strandings have been recorded from South Africa (including a mother and calf), Western Australia, Victoria and Tasmania (single dead specimen).