Contributions to Zoology, 69 (3) (2000)Cornelis J. Hazevoet; Frederick W. Wenzel: Whales and dolphins (Mammalia, Cetacea) of the Cape Verde Islands, with special reference to the Humpback Whale Megaptera novaeangliae (Borowski, 1781)

To refer to this article use this url:

Appendix 2

Unsubstantiated reports of cetaceans from the Cape Verde region (14º00‘N-18º00‘N, 22º00‘W-26º00‘W). These reports were not supported by any documentation confirming the identity of the taxa discussed.

Slijper et al. (1964) charted five sightings of Northern Right Whales Eubalaena glacialis between 10ºN-20ºN and 20ºW-30ºW obtained during the 1950s and mentioned the sighting of a herd of 22 Northern Right Whales with a calf in August (no year given) between 10ºN and 20ºN “near the Cape Verde Islands”. As no details on identification nor precise dates were given, these reports are considered unsubstantiated. Apart from the great rarity of the taxon in the eastern Atlantic in general and at these latitudes in particular, there is no evidence for the historical occurrence of right whales in the Cape Verde region.

Apart from the record of Balaenoptera cf. borealis misidentified as Fin Whale B. physalus discussed in the Systematic List above, Reiner et al. (1996) also listed a sighting of two individuals of B. physalus. As no details on identification were given, we consider this report to be unconfirmed. No documented records of Fin Whale from the Cape Verde region are known to us.

Ruud (1937) stated that the Northern Bottlenose Whale Hyperoodon ampullatus has been seen as far south as the Cape Verde Islands, without giving a source for this assertion. Equally, a listing of the taxon for the Cape Verde region by Martin et al. (1992) was not supported by any evidence. We are not aware of any documented records from Cape Verde seas. In fact,there appear to be no reports of the Northern Bottlenose Whale from the East Atlantic south of the Azores and the Mediterranean (J.G. Mead in litt., 1999).

Listings for the Cape Verde Islands of the Dwarf Sperm Whale Kogia simus (Martin et al., 1992) and Pigmy Killer Whale Feresa attenuata (Martin et al., 1992; Jefferson et al., 1997) were not supported by any evidence and should be disregarded.