Mesoplodon pacificus

Longman, 1926 - Longman's beaked whale

Distinctive Characteristics

Nothing is known of the external appearance of Longman's beaked whale, as it is known only from 2 damaged skulls. The teeth of adult males are oval in cross-section, are located at the tip of the lower jaw, and point forward.

Can be confused with

Until a fresh carcass is examined, Longman's beaked whales cannot be positively identified (except from examination of the skull). In shape and position, the teeth most closely resemble those of True's beaked whales.


The size of Longman's beaked whale is unknown, but based on the size of a skull it is thought to reach lengths of over 6 m.

Geographical Distribution

The distribution of Longman's beaked whale is incompletely known, but it may be limited to the Indo-Pacific region. The 2 available skulls are from Australia and Somalia.

Biology and Behaviour

Although Longman's beaked whale is here classified in the genus Mesoplodon, some researchers believe it belongs in its own genus, Indopacetus. It qualifies as the most poorly known of all the marine mammals.


There is no known exploitation of this species.

IUCN Status

Insufficiently known.