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Sperm Whale family

Sperm Whale family'

Two Sperm Whales
Scientific Classification

The Sperm Whale family or simply the Sperm Whales is the collective name given to three species of whale, the Sperm Whale, the Pygmy Sperm Whale and the Dwarf Sperm Whale. This 'family' is sometimes recognised as a family in the taxonomic sense of the word, and called the Kogiidae family (see reference [1]). Other sources recognise the grouping as a superfamily, the Physeteroidea, (see [2]) and reserve Kogiidae for just the pygmy and dwarf varieties.

The common characteristic of each species is spermaceti, a semi-liquid waxy white liquid filling the case or spermaceti organ in the whale's head. See the individual species articles for further details.


  1. Order Cetacea by Mead and Brownell in Mammal Species of the World, Wilson and Reeder (eds), Smithsonian Institute Press.
  2. Cetacean Societies Field Studies of Dolphins and Whales, Mann, Connor, Tyack and Whitehead (eds), ISBN 0226503410