The short, spindle-shaped body is predominantly dark grey, becoming almost black near the tail stock. This fades to a lighter grey on the underside, from the chin to the navel. The flippers, including the pectoral ones, are dark. Its beak is short and its head narrow, creating a sloping profile.
The bottom jaw has two very small teeth, which are not visible when the animal closes its mouth.
The dorsal fin is small and triangular with a wide base. There is a big tail stock leading to a fluke, or tail fin, which has slightly pointed edges. There is no central notch in the tail.
An adult Pygmy Beaked Whale reaches about 3.5 metres (or between 11 and 12 feet) in length. Their weight is unknown.
Although only one animal has been stranded at a time (implying that they travel alone), the few sightings that there have been have usually been of a pair of Pygmy Beaked Whales. When individuals were spotted in the open, they were trusting, allowing the boat to approach them. They do not have a very conspicuous blow, making them that much more difficult to identify at sea.
Where to Find Them
Based only on the strandings and the rare sightings of this elusive whale, it appears that it occupies only the mid- to deep waters of the eastern Pacific Ocean. They appear to stick relatively close to the shore of Peru, Baja California and Mexico.
Having only two very tiny teeth on their bottom jaws, the Pygmy Beaked Whale is not built for the hunt. They will feed mainly on small fish. However, where available, they will also likely dine on small crustaceans and soft, easily digested squid.
Due to the fact that the Pygmy Beaked Whale has such a limited known habitat, the threats that they face are somewhat reduced. However, fishing nets always pose a problem, as these whales may easily become entangled in the nets. Unable to free themselves and head to the surface for air, they soon drown.
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