Scientific name: Hyperoodon planifrons
Family: Ziphiidae
Range: Southern Atlantic, Indian, Pacific and Southern oceans
Habitat: Deep oceanic waters
Status: Low risk
Population: Unknown
Diet: Squid, fish and bottom-dwelling invertebrates
Length: 6-10m
Weight: 6.5-8.5 tons



Broad with no or small notch in the middle.

Dorsal Fin

Set back on the body. Trailing indented edge.


Small with convex trailing edges.

Head Shape

Whitish or pale grey beak and bulbous melon with indentation beneath. Lower jaw extends beyond upper. Two teeth visible at tip of lower jaw in adult males.


Colour from dark grey to tan or grey-brown with creamy brown or pale grey underside. Young whales are darker than adults.


Projects slightly forward about 1.9m high.

Group Size

Groups of 2-10, occasionally up to 25.


Dives last 10-60 minutes, may lie at surface for 10 minutes or more, blowing every 30-40 seconds before diving again. Occasionally lobtail or breach.