Balaenoptera edeni

The Bryde’s whale (pronounced broo-dess) is also known as the tropical whale because it is the only baleen whale species that lives year-round in warmer tropical waters. They are mostly encountered in waters above 16°C, in both offshore and coastal areas. At sea they can easily be confused with other baleen whales, particularly sei whales. The distinguishing feature of the Bryde’s whale is a set of three parallel ridges on top of the head, in comparison to the one ridge in sei whales. Of the two species, Bryde’s whales may also be more active on the surface, often with irregular breathing patterns and frequent changes in direction.

Bryde’s whales were only confirmed in the Azores for the first time in 2004. Before this they may have been misidentified and could be more common here than previously thought. Recently there have been regular confirmed sightings in the area. SInce then we have encountered Bryde’s whales in São Miguel in 2008 and most recently in 2013 when we had record encounters with Bryde’s whales throughout the month of August.

Species Details


Male: 15 m
Female: 17 m
Calf:  4 m


Female: 40,000 kg
Calf:  650 kg

Species Specs

Global population: Unknown (population trend unknown)
Status: Data Deficient
Diet: Small schooling fish, krill, squid and other invertebrates
Baleen: Unknown
Longevity: 40 years/anos
Breeding age: Unknown
Gestation: 11 – 12 months
Nursing: Unknown

In other languages

Portuguese: Baleia-de-Bryde
Spanish: Ballena de Bryde
French: Roqual de Bryde
Italian: Balenottera di Eden
German: Brydewal, Tropischer Wal
Dutch: Brydes vinvis
Swedish: Brydes fenval
Norwegian: Brydehval, sardinhval
Danish: Brydehval
Finnish: Tropiikinvalas
Polish: Pletwal równikowy
Russian: Kit brayda


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