Our Latest News

New picnic facilities for Penny's Lagoon

08/08/2018

The Parks and Wildlife Service has completed the construction of a new picnic shelter at Penny's Lagoon within the Lavinia State Reserve on King Island.
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Celebrating World Ranger Day

31/07/2018

The work of Tasmania's rangers is vital in the daily management of our 19 national parks and more than 800 reserves, encompassing approximately 50 per cent of the State.
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Southwest ecological burns important for orange-bellied parrot conservation

22/03/2018

Planned ecological burns in Southwest National Park will help regenerate important habitat areas for the critically endangered orange-bellied parrot.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.