Our Latest News

Visitor safety under the spotlight in new walker safety video

16/04/2018

Visitor safety in Tasmania's national parks and reserves has received a major investment with a suite of projects, including a new feature video on bushwalking preparation and safety.More

Draft Frenchmans Cap Recreation Zone Plan 2018

12/04/2018

The Parks and Wildlife Service has released the Draft Recreation Zone Plan 2018 for the Frenchmans Cap area.More

Redeveloped Lake Tahune Hut now open

12/04/2018

A locally designed and built, energy-efficient and sustainable hut is now welcoming bushwalkers at Lake Tahune on the Frenchmans Cap Track in the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area.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.