Physical Description

Diagnostic Description

Description

The sperm whale is the largest toothed cetacean and has the highest degree of sexual dimorphism. There is a low dorsal hump, followed by a series of crenulations. It has a large head with a squarish profile, narrow underslung lower jaw, and functional teeth only in the upper haw (these fit into sockets in the upper jaw). The blowhole is located at the left front of the head. The head is highly modified, and is divided into sections called the 'junk' and the spermaceti organ, or 'case'. The spermaceti organ is a large oil-filled reservoir, the function of which is controversial. Sperm whales have a dish shape to the facial area of the skull, extreme cranial asymmetry, and a long rostrum. Sperm whales are known to be capable of very deep, long dives. <123>
  • MASDEA (1997).
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© WoRMS for SMEBD

Source: World Register of Marine Species

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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD) Stats
                                        
Specimen Records:22Public Records:8
Specimens with Sequences:8Public Species:4
Specimens with Barcodes:8Public BINs:3
Species:4         
Species With Barcodes:4         
          
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Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

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Barcode data

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Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

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Locations of barcode samples

Collection Sites: world map showing specimen collection locations for Physeteridae

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Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

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