Date: May 1, 1979
Creator: Payne, S.F.
Description: Twenty-seven marine mammal species have been recorded for the Gulf of Mexico, including 7 Mysticetes or baleen whales, 17 Odontocetes or toothed whales, 1 Sirenian (manatee), and 1 or 2 Pinnipeds or seals. The most common species in the Gulf is Tursiops truncatus, the bottlenosed dolphin, an inshore species. Offshore, Stenella plagiodon, the spotted dolphin, is fairly common. Most other species are recorded from very few sightings or strandings. None of the endangered species is common in potential OTEC sites in the Gulf of Mexico. Twenty-two marine mammals may occur in Hawaii; 2 Mystecetes, 19 Odonotocetes, and the endemic monk seal. The monk seal (Monachus schauinslandi), an endangered species, lives in the extreme northwestern island chain away from potential OTEC sites. Among the most common cetaceans in Hawaii is the endangered humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae). Stenella longirostris, the spinner dolphin; and Tursiops sp., the bottlenosed dolphin are also fairly common. The baleen whales feed on zooplankton during the summer in polar waters, and are migratory, while the toothed whales feed mainly on fish and squid, and are found in temperate or tropical regions year-round. The manatee is vegetarian and the pinnipeds are fish- or squid-eaters. Environmental effects of OTEC which ...
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