Friday, April 22, 2005

ENV: Not-Really-a-Cat-Friday

Just dashing off a quick picture of one of the most strikingly colored, and not very often seen, cetaceans -- Hector's Dolphin, Cephalorhynchus hectori. It is considered the world's rarest dolphin by some, and is endemic to the waters of New Zealand. It is rather odd for a cetacean to be considered an endemic as boundaries are hard to define, but records bear this out.

My favorite cetacean is the Vaquita, Phocoena sinus, the world's rarest cetacean of any kind. Oddly, even though i've worked with a half-dozen captive cetacean species in bioacoustics studies, the Vaquita is the only cetacean i've seen in the wild besides the Bottle-nosed Dolphin, a contender for the world's most common cetacean. The Vaquita can also be considered an endemic -- to the Gulf of California.

Hector's Dolphin, Cephalorhynchus hectori
Photos by Kirsty Russell (top) and Tom Walmsley (bottom)


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