beaked whale


: any of a family (Ziphiidae) of toothed whales that have a relatively long, narrow snout suggestive of a beak, that in the males often have a large bulging forehead, and that unlike other whales lack a notch on the fluke

Note: Beaked whales lack teeth in the upper jaw. Typically, female beaked whales also lack functional teeth in the lower jaw while male whales have one to two pairs of small tusklike teeth in the lower jaw. Beaked whales feed chiefly on deepwater squid.

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Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Or, in the case of the beaked whale, floating in the water. Laurelin Kruse, Anchorage Daily News, 21 July 2022 Watching San Diego posted a video Aug. 10 on social media of a yellowish-brown whale with a white face, a.k.a., Cuvier’s beaked whale. Los Angeles Times, 26 Aug. 2021 After analyzing the data collection, the researchers found the 3-D tags picked up the same circling movements in many animals, including king penguins, tiger sharks, whale sharks and even a Cuvier's beaked whale, New Scientist reports. Elizabeth Gamillo, Smithsonian Magazine, 22 Mar. 2021 The previous record, held by a Cuvier’s beaked whale in 2014 and heralded as an amazing accomplishment, was two hours and 18 minutes. Danielle Hall, Smithsonian Magazine, 17 Dec. 2020 This particular type of beaked whale had unusual teeth placement, researcher Jay Barlow told Reuters. Joshua Bote, USA TODAY, 10 Dec. 2020 In 2017, a beaked whale washed up onshore near Bergen, Norway. Amia Srinivasan, The New Yorker, 17 Aug. 2020 An extremely rare beaked whale was found washed up on a beach at Point Reyes National Seashore this week, prompting animated excitement among normally self-possessed marine scientists. Peter Fimrite,, 20 Aug. 2019 Scientists have announced the discovery of a new species of beaked whale in the waters off the Japanese coast. Fox News, 7 Sep. 2019 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'beaked whale.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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Word History

First Known Use

1755, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of beaked whale was in 1755

Dictionary Entries Near beaked whale

Cite this Entry

“Beaked whale.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Sep. 2022.

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Last Updated: 8 Aug 2022

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