Mesoplodon carlhubbsi Moore, 1963
English: Hubbs' beaked whale
Spanish: Zifio de Hubbs
French: Mésoplodon de Hubbs
Drawing of Mesoplodon carlhubbsi © Wurtz-Artescienza (see
Adult females and the young are medium grey which fades through
lighter grey to white on the flanks and undersides. Males are dark
grey to black, save for a white region from the rostrum's tip and
lower jaw to the back of the teeth, and another around the blowhole.
Two prominant teeth erupt from the rear of their lower jaw, but
remain concealed in females. The skin may have many scratches from
other males' teeth. Both the longest male and the longest female
specimens measured 5.3m (Ward 2001).
Hubbs' beaked whale is found in temperate waters of the North Pacific.
In the west it has been recorded from the northeastern coast of
Honshu; in the east it is found from Prince Rupert in British Columbia
south to San Diego in California (Rice, 1998). According to Houston
(1990b) it is known from only 31 stranded specimens and one possible
live sighting. Most strandings have been along the North American
coast from Prince Rupert, British Columbia to La Jolla, California.
Four strandings are recorded from Ayukawa, Japan.
Distribution of Mesoplodon
carlhubbsi (mod. from Carwardine, 1995 and Pitman 2002;
Copyright: CMS / GROMS; enlarge
map).). Hubbs' beaked whale is found in the temperate
North Pacific from California to Japan (Pitman 2002).
3. Population size
4. Biology and Behaviour
The male Hubbs' Beaked Whale is one of the few beaked whales that
could be positively identified at sea, although there has been only
a single probable sighting (near La Jolla, California, USA). Females
and juveniles are probably impossible to identify at sea; they have
medium gray upper sides, lighter gray sides, and white undersides
and their teeth do not erupt. With only a single possible sighting,
very little is known about their behavior. The remarkable degree
of scarring suggests considerable aggression between males. Presumably,
Hubbs' Beaked Whales are shy and unobtrusive like other Mesoplodon
species (Carwardine, 1995).
The species is not known to have been, or to be, of interest to
commercial fisheries and is probably protected by its rarity and
occurrence in less frequented (by man) waters of the North Pacific
(Houston, 1990b). As opposed to this, Jefferson et al. (1993) report
that some Hubb's beaked whales have been taken by harpoon off Japan.
Hubbs' Beaked Whale is categorised as "Data Deficient"
by the IUCN and is not listed by CMS (see "links").
Mesoplodon - Beaked whales: Introduction and Sources"
Boris Culik, Kiel, Germany, 2003