This mysterious whale is so elusive that it wasn’t seen alive in the wild until 1998. Gervais’ beaked whales live in the waters of the central and north Atlantic Ocean.
Sometimes confused with the 21 other species of beaked whales, Gervais’ beaked whales are difficult to study. Weighing about 2,640 pounds, the whales can grow up to 17 feet long. Living an estimated 27 years, they eat squid, shrimp, and small fish.
Since information on the species is scarce, it’s possible they are threatened by a number of factors. These include being caught as by-catch, noise pollution, and climate change.
Here’s an excerpt from the National Geographic article:
“Gervais’ beaked whales are easily one of the most elusive mammals to swim through our oceans. Most of the information we have about them comes from studies of corpses that have washed ashore, and the first live whale was only spotted about 20 years ago.
On February 27, photographer and videographer Patrick Dykstra captured what may be the first drone or aerial footage of Gervais’ beaked whales. He was filming about three miles off the west coast of Dominica in the Caribbean Sea. Dykstra and his Picture Adventure Expeditions team accidentally came across the rare beaked whales when they were filming sperm whales for an upcoming production.”