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Hyperoodon ampullatus — Overview

North Atlantic Bottle-nosed Whale learn more about names for this taxon

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IUCN threat status:

Data Deficient (DD)

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Description

The northern bottlenose whale is the only species of the genus Hyperoodon that lives in the North Atlantic, but there is an unidentified species of whale living in the North Pacific that may turn out to belong to this genus. The northern bottlenose whale has a long, tube-like snout, different in shape from the beaked face of the other whales of the ziphiid family. This species prefers deep water and may avoid shallows. It has been caught in nets at depths below 1,000 m and has been known to stay submerged for up to two hours. In the Arctic Ocean, the whales stay near the boundaries between cold polar currents and warmer Atlantic currents, where the food supply is rich. Squid and a variety of fish make up most of their diet. Their growth pattern has been measured by counting annual growth rings that appear naturally in their teeth, much like tree growth rings. Males reach full size at 20 years and females, which tend to be smaller, at 15 years. Life span is estimated to be at least 37 years.

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© Smithsonian Institution

Source: Smithsonian's North American Mammals

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