Pregnant female dwarf sperm whale stranding at Haga-Haga (South Africa)

A 2.2 m female dwarf sperm whale (Kogia sima)  stranded at Haga-Haga this past weekend (13th October 2018). It had a high parasitic worm load in the oesophagus and was carrying a female foetus (illustrated) . Dr Roger Ellis (EL Museum board member pictured) is thanked for assisting museum scientist Kevin Cole with the necropsy on the cetacean. These whales are rarely seen in the wild and are difficult to distinguish with the other small sperm whale species called the pygmy sperm whale. Two features which assisted in the identification was the erect dorsal fin centred  on the mid-back (illustrated) and the number and shape of the teeth. The pygmy sperm whale has a smaller less erect dorsal fin situated closer to the tail than the head. It also usually has more teeth in the lower jaw. Mrs Connie Oosthuizen of Marshstrand is thanked for reporting the stranding to the museum.

Kogia sima4-001.jpg

dd1

Daily Dispatch Wednesday 17th October 2018

SCN_0032-003.jpg

 

About East London Museum Science

Conservation Biologist East London Museum South Africa
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s