True’s beaked whales, which reach about 17 feet long, are believed to eat squid, and based on their cousins, likely dive thousands of feet below the surface for hours at a time on a single breath. Their fins can also be tucked into side pockets that further streamline their bodies.
“These are animals the size of elephants that we just can’t find. They’re a mystery,” Natacha Aguilar de Soto, who has studied the whales for 15 years, told the Washington Post.
The footage was published in the journal PeerJ, along with a detailed study on the elusive whales that culled data from a number of sources, including genetic analysis of other beaked whale species. The goal: to get a better idea of threats human activity may pose to mammals who are highly adapted to deep sea diving.