-Ziphius cavirostris- is a medium-sized whale with an average body length of 6.4 meters. The female is usually a little larger and can be up to 7 meters long. Calves are 2.1 meters at birth. -Z. cavirostris- has a spindle shaped body that is a little stouter than other ziphiids. They have a small head (about 10% of their body length) and a distinct neck. As with all ziphiids, they have two grooves along the throat. They have a stubby beak which is almost indistinct in larger animals and a scooped out hollow behind the blowhole. Adult males have two large teeth on the lower jaw that grow up to 8 centimeters. In the females, the teeth never break through the gums. Some individuals have been found with 15-40 vestigial teeth that never erupted. -Z. cavirostris- have small rounded flippers that fold into depressions or "flipper pockets" on their flanks. They have a relatively tall fin (40 centimeters) that is shaped like a shark fin. There is a small notch in the center of their broad flukes.
The coloration of -Z. cavirostris- varies among individuals. In the Indopacific waters, the whales are often sienna colored, ranging from a dark yellow to a deep brown. Their backs are usually darker than their bellies, but some have a reversed coloration: pale backs with black stomachs. The head is almost always totally white, especially in older males. In the Atlantic waters, -Z. cavirostris- have a grey blue color, often with the same pale head coloration. They have dark spots around the eye. Juveniles are usually lighter than adults (Minasian et al. 1984, Watson 1981).
Average mass: 3000 kg.
Average mass: 2.701e+06 g.