Alternate Title

Stranding Records of a Finback Whale, Balaenoptera physalus, from Mississippi and the Goose-Beaked Whale, Ziphius cavirostris, from Louisiana

Document Type



Stranding records are sometimes the only source of data concerning some species of cetaceans and it is appropriate that these incidents be reported in some detail. This is particularly true of rare or little known species. Bottle-nosed dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) carcasses stranded on the Mississippi and Louisiana coasts are so common that they receive little attention. Other species occur and have, no doubt, been overlooked or confused by laymen with Tursiops. Even the rare stranding of large whales in this area may go unreported except for news stories that fail to identify the animal properly and which are not readily available to cetologists.

The stranding in 1967 of one of the first definitely reported finbacks, Balaenoptera physalus, in the Gulf of Mexico is given here. It is the first Mississippi record.

Moore (1953) noted that “only six specimens of the goose-beaked whale have been reported on the eastern coast of North America” and provided four new records from the Florida west coast. The present report includes a Louisiana stranding in 1969.

First Page


Last Page