Collections News: Beaked Whale Skeleton

beaked whale skeleton

A 20-foot long Cuvier's Beaked Whale skeleton was acquired by the State Museum in 2014. Worldwide, there are less than 250 Cuvier's Beaked Whale specimens in collections. These whales, also known as goose-beaked whales, are known to be one of the deepest diving whales. One Cuvier's Beaked Whale was tracked to a depth of over 3,000 feet. 

The Museum's beaked whale skeleton is from Fishers Island, NY. In early 2014, the whale beached itself along the shore of the island. The State Museum worked with Dr. Tom French, from the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, to help prepare the whale skeleton before it was officially taken into the State Museum's Mammalogy Collection. 

The Cuvier's Beaked Whale is an important addition to the Museum's collections. Because of the rarity of Cuvier's Beaked Whale specimens, the Museum's skeleton will be useful to researchers and scientists looking to learn more about this interesting species.