The external appearance of Andrews’ beaked whale is poorly known; however, its skeleton is similar to that of Hubbs’ beaked whale. Adult males are all dark, except for the front half of the beak, which is white.
The flattened tusks of males of this species emerge from the middle of the lower jaw on raised sockets, and protrude above the upper jaw. Females reach at least 4.6 m in length and males reach 4.7 m. Length at birth is presumed to be about 2 m.
Can be Confused With
The teeth of bulls, if seen well, will allow them to be distinguished from most other mesoplodonts. They are most likely to the mistaken for Blainville’s beaked whales.
To date, Andrews’ beaked whale is known only from the South Pacific and Indian oceans. Strandings have occurred in Australia, New Zealand, Tasmania, and the Kerguelen Islands.
Ecology and Behavior
Essentially nothing is known of the biology of this species, other than the few facts that have been gleaned from stranded individuals.
Feeding and Prey
Andrews’ beaked whales are assumed to feed primarily on cephalopods, like other members of the genus.
Threats and Status
Nothing much is known of the population status of the species. Andrews’ beaked whales are currently ‘Data Deficient’ (IUCN) and ‘Not Listed’ (ESA).
Baker, A.N. 2001. Status, relationships, and distribution of Mesoplodon bowdoini Andrews, 1908 (Cetacea Ziphiidae). Marine Mammal Science 17:473-493.
Dalebout, M.L. 2002. Species identity, genetic diversity, and molecular systematic relationships among the Ziphiidae (beaked whales). Ph.D. dissertation, University of Auckland, New Zealand.
Mead, J.G. 1989. Beaked whales of the genus Mesoplodon. pp. 349-430 in S.H. Ridgway and R. Harrison, eds. Handbook of marine mammals, Vol. 4: River dolphins and the larger toothed whales. Academic Press.
Pitman, R.L. 2002. Mesoplodont whales Mesoplodon spp. pp. 738-742 in W.F. Perrin, B. Würsig and J.G.M. Thewissen, eds. Encyclopedia of marine mammals. Academic Press.