Scarred Giant — Artist: Chris HarmanSperm Whale range (in blue)A piece of Sperm Whale skin with giant squid sucker scars
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Sperm Whale

The Sperm Whale (Physeter macrocephalus) is the largest of the toothed whales and is believed to be the largest toothed animal to ever inhabit the planet. more...

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(The baleen blue whale is larger, and invertebrates such as the lion's mane jelly fish or the Portuguese man of war may be longer.) The whale was named after the milky-white substance spermaceti found in its head and originally mistaken for sperm. The Sperm Whale's enormous head and distinctive shape, as well as its central role in Herman Melville's Moby-Dick, have led many to describe it as the archetypal whale. Partly due to Melville, the Sperm Whale is commonly associated with the mythological Leviathan of Biblical lore.

Historically the Sperm Whale has also been known as the Common Cachalot. The word cachalot is originally Portuguese (cachalote), probably coming from cachola, a colloquial term for head. Sperm Whales were hunted until recently in Portuguese atlantic archipelago of Azores.

Physical description

The Sperm Whale is exceptional for its very large head, particularly in males, which is typically one-third of the animals' length. Indeed, the species name macrocephalus is derived from the Greek for "big head" (strictly: long head). In contrast to the smooth skin of most other large whales, the skin on the back of the Sperm Whale is usually knobbly and has been likened to a prune by whale-watching enthusiasts . They are uniformly grey in colour though may appear brown in sunlight (the "Great White Whale" of Melville's novel, if such an animal existed, was an albino, and white sperm whales have been reported in reality as well). Perhaps unsurprisingly, the brain of the Sperm Whale is the largest and heaviest of all animals ever (weighing on average 7 kg in a grown male). However, the brain is not large relative to body size.

The blowhole is situated very close to the front of the head and shifted to the whale's left. This gives rise to a distinctive bushy blow angled forward. The dorsal fin is set about two-thirds of the way down the spine and is typically short and shaped like an equilateral triangle. The fluke is also triangular and very thick. Flukes are lifted very high out of the water before a whale begins a deep dive.

Sperm Whales have 20–26 pairs of cone-shaped teeth in their lower jaw. Each tooth can weigh as much as one kilogram. The reason for the existence of the teeth is not known with certainty. It is believed that they are not necessary for feeding on squid (see Feeding below) and indeed healthy well-fed Sperm Whales have been found in the wild without teeth. The current scientific consensus is that the teeth may be used for aggression between males of the same species. This hypothesis is consistent with the conic shape and wide spacing of the teeth. Rudimentary teeth are also present in the upper jaw, but these rarely open into the mouth.

Read more at Wikipedia.org


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Sperm Whale Cachalot Machine Washable Memory Foam MatSperm Whale Cachalot Machine Washable Memory Foam Mat $29.99 List price:  Previous Price $46.00 Symple Stuff Lepanto Crazy Sperm Whale Lady Coffee MugSymple Stuff Lepanto Crazy Sperm Whale Lady Coffee Mug $12.99
New Bedford Ma Right Sperm Whaling iN Action c1910 Postcard #1 Exc CondNew Bedford Ma Right Sperm Whaling iN Action c1910 Postcard #1 Exc Cond $14.79 Whaling, Capturing a Sperm Whale Linen Vintage Postcard N15Whaling, Capturing a Sperm Whale Linen Vintage Postcard N15 $7.29
Mr. Zhou Little Sperm Whale Tag Key Ring *Vegetable Leather Tag with Brass Ring*Mr. Zhou Little Sperm Whale Tag Key Ring *Vegetable Leather Tag with Brass Ring* $5.60 Was:  Previous Price $8.00 1975 Sperm Whale Sterling Silver Medal Danbury Mint American Wildlife D80441975 Sperm Whale Sterling Silver Medal Danbury Mint American Wildlife D8044 $177.88
Nevis 2015 Mnh Whales & Dolphins of Caribbean Ii 1v S/S Sperm Whale MarineNevis 2015 Mnh Whales & Dolphins of Caribbean Ii 1v S/S Sperm Whale Marine $7.27 1898 "The Cruise of the Cachalot: Round the World after Sperm Whales" by Fran.1898 "The Cruise of the Cachalot: Round the World after Sperm Whales" by Fran. $59.00
1979 Greenpeace Sperm Whale - Vtg. Dollar Coin- Pendant / Rare1979 Greenpeace Sperm Whale - Vtg. Dollar Coin- Pendant / Rare $19.95 Sperm whale Lapel PinSperm whale Lapel Pin $3.95
2002 Norfolk Island Joint Issue New Caledonia Sperm Whales - Muh2002 Norfolk Island Joint Issue New Caledonia Sperm Whales - Muh $3.55 Inktastic All's Whale That Ends Whale- Whale Joke Toddler T-Shirt Beaches SpermInktastic All's Whale That Ends Whale- Whale Joke Toddler T-Shirt Beaches Sperm $14.99
Ocean Wilds: Realm of the Killer Whales/ Sperm Whale Oasis (Dvd, 2001) NewOcean Wilds: Realm of the Killer Whales/ Sperm Whale Oasis (Dvd, 2001) New $11.16 Was:  Previous Price $13.95 Cruise of the "Cachalot" Sperm Whales Frank Bullen 1898 1St Ed + Slipcase HtfCruise of the "Cachalot" Sperm Whales Frank Bullen 1898 1St Ed + Slipcase Htf $99.99
Scrimshaw Sperm whale tooth resin replica "Union Flags "6 inch Super Details!Scrimshaw Sperm whale tooth resin replica "Union Flags "6 inch Super Details! $19.95 Smithsonian Oceanic Collection: Giant of the Sea : The Story of a Sperm Whale b…Smithsonian Oceanic Collection: Giant of the Sea : The Story of a Sperm Whale b… $6.49
Sperm Whale Fish Caught off Durban South Africa, Whaling, Fishermen Old PostcardSperm Whale Fish Caught off Durban South Africa, Whaling, Fishermen Old Postcard $15.85 Hand Carved Wood Wooden Ironwood Sperm Whale Figurine 6.75" Long Made In UsaHand Carved Wood Wooden Ironwood Sperm Whale Figurine 6.75" Long Made In Usa $27.99
Sperm Whale Bookend Set Whaling Bookends Whales Fishermen Nautical Decor BooksSperm Whale Bookend Set Whaling Bookends Whales Fishermen Nautical Decor Books $19.00 Antique Faux Scrimshaw Sperm Whale Tooth Engraving Fishing California 1821Antique Faux Scrimshaw Sperm Whale Tooth Engraving Fishing California 1821 $105.69
Brooch fish, whale, sperm whaleBrooch fish, whale, sperm whale $4.99 Was:  Previous Price $9.99 Chap Mei Sperm Whale Toys R UsChap Mei Sperm Whale Toys R Us $42.00
Vanuatu 785-7 Mnh Whales, Blue Whale, Humpback Whale, Sperm WhaleVanuatu 785-7 Mnh Whales, Blue Whale, Humpback Whale, Sperm Whale $6.75 Whale on wheels Handmade  Sperm Whale on boat with wheelsWhale on wheels Handmade  Sperm Whale on boat with wheels $33.99
Vanuatu 2001 Whales Set "Sperm,Humpback & Blue Whales" Sg.857-859 MnhVanuatu 2001 Whales Set "Sperm,Humpback & Blue Whales" Sg.857-859 Mnh $3.31 Sperm Whale Seismic Study in the Gulf of Mexico by U.S. Department of the InteriSperm Whale Seismic Study in the Gulf of Mexico by U.S. Department of the Interi $20.97
18" Sea animals Cotton Linen Pillow Case Sofa Cushion Cover Fashion Home Decor18" Sea animals Cotton Linen Pillow Case Sofa Cushion Cover Fashion Home Decor $3.40 to $3.60 2011 Smithsonian Magazine: Volcano Voyage In Hawaii/Lunar Tourism/Sperm Whales2011 Smithsonian Magazine: Volcano Voyage In Hawaii/Lunar Tourism/Sperm Whales $5.00
Sperm Whale 04 SocksSperm Whale 04 Socks $14.95 18" Pygmy Sperm Whale Sculpture Replica Original Art Shark Sea Life18" Pygmy Sperm Whale Sculpture Replica Original Art Shark Sea Life $100.00
National Geographic Magazine November 1995 Oceans Sperm Whales Basques SquirrelsNational Geographic Magazine November 1995 Oceans Sperm Whales Basques Squirrels $9.99 Vintage Lithograph By J.h.bufford 1870s 16x32 Sperm WhalingVintage Lithograph By J.h.bufford 1870s 16x32 Sperm Whaling $1,999.99
Premium Thick-Wrap Canvas Wall Art entitled Sperm whalePremium Thick-Wrap Canvas Wall Art entitled Sperm whale $54.99 to $146.99 List price:  Previous Price $155.99 Ni23) Norfolk Island 2002 Phillip New Caledonia/Sperm Whale (2) Muh. Price: $7Ni23) Norfolk Island 2002 Phillip New Caledonia/Sperm Whale (2) Muh. Price: $7 $3.23 Was:  Previous Price $4.96
Greenland Full Sheet Marginal G202 1996 Whales I - Sperm Whale - MnhGreenland Full Sheet Marginal G202 1996 Whales I - Sperm Whale - Mnh $19.99 Geobra Playmobil #7998 Sperm Whale 13" FigurineGeobra Playmobil #7998 Sperm Whale 13" Figurine $20.00
Sperm Whales and Other Deep Water Life (Under the Sea)Sperm Whales and Other Deep Water Life (Under the Sea) $9.19 Australia 821-824 Mnh Whales 1982 Sperm, Southern right, Blue, Humpback x18765Australia 821-824 Mnh Whales 1982 Sperm, Southern right, Blue, Humpback x18765 $2.50
Aat Australian Antarctic Sperm Whale Calamar Squids Mnh * (27)Aat Australian Antarctic Sperm Whale Calamar Squids Mnh * (27) $2.05 I Love Sperm Whales Keyring - Gift - Birthday - Christmas - Stocking FillerI Love Sperm Whales Keyring - Gift - Birthday - Christmas - Stocking Filler $4.53
Vintage Brass Sperm Whale • 3.25” of brass • 3.9 OzVintage Brass Sperm Whale • 3.25” of brass • 3.9 Oz $13.00 Bellaa 29677 Whale Bookends Nautical Sea Life Lovers Sperm . - Free 2 Day ShipBellaa 29677 Whale Bookends Nautical Sea Life Lovers Sperm . - Free 2 Day Ship $27.12
Congo 2014 Cto Whales Sperm Whale 1v S/S Marine Animals StampsCongo 2014 Cto Whales Sperm Whale 1v S/S Marine Animals Stamps $2.31 Nova Stone Alantic Canada Carved Black Whale (Sperm?) Made In CanadaNova Stone Alantic Canada Carved Black Whale (Sperm?) Made In Canada $7.50
Sperm Whale Throw pillowSperm Whale Throw pillow $11.95 Art Picture Paint Painting Watercolor Sperm WhaleArt Picture Paint Painting Watercolor Sperm Whale $26.99
Sperm Whale Seismic Study in the Gulf of Mexico Summary Report, 2002-2004 by U.SSperm Whale Seismic Study in the Gulf of Mexico Summary Report, 2002-2004 by U.S $22.73 New Papo 56021 Sea Sperm Whale - Ocean Sea Life WildlifeNew Papo 56021 Sea Sperm Whale - Ocean Sea Life Wildlife $24.78
Vanuatu 2001 Whales/Cetaceans/Marine Life/Animals/Sperm/Humpba ck/Blue s/s MnhVanuatu 2001 Whales/Cetaceans/Marine Life/Animals/Sperm/Humpba ck/Blue s/s Mnh $6.99 Vintage brass Whale Ocean Creature Sperm whale paper weight 2 1/2" MetalVintage brass Whale Ocean Creature Sperm whale paper weight 2 1/2" Metal $6.95
Zeckos Set of 2 Rustic Brown Finish Sperm Whale Cast Iron Wall HooksZeckos Set of 2 Rustic Brown Finish Sperm Whale Cast Iron Wall Hooks $20.06 List price:  Previous Price $33.00 Sperm Whales (ExLib) by Megan M. GundersonSperm Whales (ExLib) by Megan M. Gunderson $4.18
174066 Mother Sperm Whale and Calf Animal Wildlife Decor Wall Print Poster Ca174066 Mother Sperm Whale and Calf Animal Wildlife Decor Wall Print Poster Ca $9.66 to $50.69 Vintage (1992) Avon Endangered Species Sperm Whale Drinking Stein SteinsVintage (1992) Avon Endangered Species Sperm Whale Drinking Stein Steins $11.99
Cooperative Research to Study Dive Patterns of Sperm Whales in the Atlantic OceaCooperative Research to Study Dive Patterns of Sperm Whales in the Atlantic Ocea $20.30 Sperm Humpback Blue & Southen Right Whale Australia Gutter Pairs Cto Full GumSperm Humpback Blue & Southen Right Whale Australia Gutter Pairs Cto Full Gum $2.25 Was:  Previous Price $2.50
1947 Flightex Fabrics Inc Vintage Airplane related Print Ad Sperm Whale1947 Flightex Fabrics Inc Vintage Airplane related Print Ad Sperm Whale $12.99 Zoomie Kids Brim Mother and calf sperm whales underwater Coffee MugZoomie Kids Brim Mother and calf sperm whales underwater Coffee Mug $15.99 List price:  Previous Price $17.98
1977 Aat Sperm Whale Gipsy Moth $1 Cocos Australia Spiny Anteater Aboriginal Art1977 Aat Sperm Whale Gipsy Moth $1 Cocos Australia Spiny Anteater Aboriginal Art $7.48 Was:  Previous Price $8.50 Vintage Sperm Whale 3" Pvc Marine Animal Figurine Figure!Vintage Sperm Whale 3" Pvc Marine Animal Figurine Figure! $2.00
Love The Whales Sperm Whale Elongated Penny Pressed Smashed 27Love The Whales Sperm Whale Elongated Penny Pressed Smashed 27 $1.15 Poster, Many Sizes; Sperm Whale 1876Poster, Many Sizes; Sperm Whale 1876 $31.80 to $247.80
Flags of Our Nation Connecticut 42c Stamp Fdc Bullfrog Sc#4281 07029 Sperm WhaleFlags of Our Nation Connecticut 42c Stamp Fdc Bullfrog Sc#4281 07029 Sperm Whale $7.95 Safari Ltd Saf100209 Sperm Whale, Wild Safari Sea lifeSafari Ltd Saf100209 Sperm Whale, Wild Safari Sea life $13.25
East Urban Home Vine Mother and Calf Sperm Whales Underwater Pillow CoverEast Urban Home Vine Mother and Calf Sperm Whales Underwater Pillow Cover $20.99 Scrimshaw Sperm Whale Resin Replica Tooth " The Samantha" Great DetailScrimshaw Sperm Whale Resin Replica Tooth " The Samantha" Great Detail $17.00
Rare Vintage Goebel Frosted Crystal Sperm Whale,ObRare Vintage Goebel Frosted Crystal Sperm Whale,Ob $39.95 Fiji 1998 Sg1021-1024 Sperm Whales set MnhFiji 1998 Sg1021-1024 Sperm Whales set Mnh $5.67
Chic Smart Women Girl Canva Handbag Coin Purse Cute Phone Holder Bag GiftChic Smart Women Girl Canva Handbag Coin Purse Cute Phone Holder Bag Gift $2.49 to $2.69 Sperm whale oil sea Ambergris medicinal minyak gamat for massage cuts bruisesSperm whale oil sea Ambergris medicinal minyak gamat for massage cuts bruises $29.98
Sea Life Simulation Animal Model Action Toys Educational Collection GiftSea Life Simulation Animal Model Action Toys Educational Collection Gift $9.12 to $10.24 Sperm Whale Wooden Plaque - 36 inches longSperm Whale Wooden Plaque - 36 inches long $22.00
Decorative sperm whale vinyl stickerDecorative sperm whale vinyl sticker $6.34 Sperm Whale Cachalot Fabric Standard PillowcaseSperm Whale Cachalot Fabric Standard Pillowcase $19.99 List price:  Previous Price $28.00
Carolines Treasures Bb5338Jmat Sperm Whale Cachalot Indoor or Outdoor Mat 24x36Carolines Treasures Bb5338Jmat Sperm Whale Cachalot Indoor or Outdoor Mat 24x36 $37.99 List price:  Previous Price $55.00 Schleich 14764 Sperm Whale (Sealife) Plastic FigureSchleich 14764 Sperm Whale (Sealife) Plastic Figure $19.83
Carolines Treasures Bb5338Mat Sperm Whale Cachalot Indoor or Outdoor Mat 18x27Carolines Treasures Bb5338Mat Sperm Whale Cachalot Indoor or Outdoor Mat 18x27 $26.99 List price:  Previous Price $40.00 The Natural History of the Sperm Whale. to Which Is Added, a Sketch of a South-SThe Natural History of the Sperm Whale. to Which Is Added, a Sketch of a South-S $39.06 List price:  Previous Price $46.87
Niue 1997 Sg829 $1.20 Sperm Whale FuNiue 1997 Sg829 $1.20 Sperm Whale Fu $1.06 2002 Mnh Antigua & Barbuda Whales Stamps Sheets Killer Minke Sperm Marine Life2002 Mnh Antigua & Barbuda Whales Stamps Sheets Killer Minke Sperm Marine Life $11.99
whale sperm vintage cast iron figurine, miniature, 3" lengthwhale sperm vintage cast iron figurine, miniature, 3" length $10.00 Sperm Whale Pewter Lapel Pin Badge/Brooch Cute Gift Bnwt/NewSperm Whale Pewter Lapel Pin Badge/Brooch Cute Gift Bnwt/New $10.56
1982 Australia Whales 24C Sperm Whale Stamp - Fine Used1982 Australia Whales 24C Sperm Whale Stamp - Fine Used $0.53 Vintage Sperm Whaling Postcard - New Bedford, Mass. - "The Capture"-UnpostedVintage Sperm Whaling Postcard - New Bedford, Mass. - "The Capture"-Unposted $5.95
The Sperm Whale, Physeter Catodon by L. Harrison Matthews (English) Hardcover BoThe Sperm Whale, Physeter Catodon by L. Harrison Matthews (English) Hardcover Bo $46.50 Splash Sperm WhaleSplash Sperm Whale $20.34
Deep Sea Sperm Whales Sculpture By Cook & Co Scrimshaw Art Mint ConditionDeep Sea Sperm Whales Sculpture By Cook & Co Scrimshaw Art Mint Condition $88.00 Sperm whale - Vintage photoSperm whale - Vintage photo $14.90
Sperm* ‎– Shh! Heinäsirkat 1970 / Free Improvisation / Jazz / Non-MusicSperm* ‎– Shh! Heinäsirkat 1970 / Free Improvisation / Jazz / Non-Music $200.00 Antique Repro 8X10 Photograph Sperm Whale Hunters Rendering Oil # 2Antique Repro 8X10 Photograph Sperm Whale Hunters Rendering Oil # 2 $11.99
Floz sperm whale 8 inches cachalot Sea animal marine life figure modelFloz sperm whale 8 inches cachalot Sea animal marine life figure model $6.99 Was:  Previous Price $11.98 Premium Thick-Wrap Canvas Wall Art entitled Mother and her calf Sperm WhalePremium Thick-Wrap Canvas Wall Art entitled Mother and her calf Sperm Whale $54.99 to $146.99 List price:  Previous Price $202.99
Scrimshaw Sperm Whale Tooth Handmade Replica Ship Bone Pirate Map Art Fossil NewScrimshaw Sperm Whale Tooth Handmade Replica Ship Bone Pirate Map Art Fossil New $27.95 14k Yellow Gold Sperm Whale Polished Charm Pendant 14mmx26mm14k Yellow Gold Sperm Whale Polished Charm Pendant 14mmx26mm $82.82
Mid Century Modern Solid Wood Sperm Whale Moby Dick (Broken Tail Fin) 1-5Mid Century Modern Solid Wood Sperm Whale Moby Dick (Broken Tail Fin) 1-5 $9.99 Vintage Scrimshaw Faux Resin Carved Sperm Whale Tooth Vicksburg MississippiVintage Scrimshaw Faux Resin Carved Sperm Whale Tooth Vicksburg Mississippi $31.49 Was:  Previous Price $34.99
Sperm Whale Seismic Study in the Gulf of Mexico Synthesis Report by U.S. DepartmSperm Whale Seismic Study in the Gulf of Mexico Synthesis Report by U.S. Departm $22.97 Tashtego Martha’s Vineyard Shop Art Poster Edgartown Sperm Whale Moby DickTashtego Martha’s Vineyard Shop Art Poster Edgartown Sperm Whale Moby Dick $25.00
Vintage 8.5” Long Brass Sperm Whale Door Knocker. Weathered.Vintage 8.5” Long Brass Sperm Whale Door Knocker. Weathered. $15.00 Rppc Carmel,Ca Sperm Whale Skeleton,Point Lobos Monterey County CaliforniaRppc Carmel,Ca Sperm Whale Skeleton,Point Lobos Monterey County California $24.95
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Prices current as of last update, 03/24/19 3:01pm.

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