Photo: Coast Guard Public Affairs Office

Philippines: Dead Sperm Bryde’s Whale found in Guimaras
By Frances Mangosing, 25th January 2017;

A decaying body of a Bryde’s Whale (Balaenoptera edeni) was found in the shorelines of Brgy. Sawang, Buenavista in Guimaras on Wednesday.

The cause of death remained unknown.

The Whale was retrieved by the joint personnel of Coast Guard Buenavista and the Guimaras Environment and Natural Resources, the Philippine Coast Guard said in a statement.

The dead Whale was spotted 700 meters from the shoreline by Rex Camarista at about 3 a.m. It was later towed to McArthur’s Wharf.

Known in Filipino as “balyena,” the endangered Whale measures 4.5 meters in length and has an estimated weight of 500 kilos.

Source: Philippine Daily Inquirer

The carcass is clearly not that of a Sperm Whale (Physeter macrocephalus); it’s a small Rorqual (Balaenoptera sp.), with the prnounced ridges on the head suggesting that it’s a Bryde’s Whale.

The taxonomy of the Bryde’s Whale is still far from settled; what we call the Bryde’s Whale has been split into two subspecies or even distinct species by some authorities: the true Bryde’s Whale, a larger species found in tropical and warm temperate waters worldwide (Balaenoptera brydei), and the Eden’s Whale, a smaller form that may be restricted to coastal waters of the Indo-Pacific (Balaenoptera edeni). Both species(?) have been recorded from tropical waters of Southeast Asia.

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