In The Marine Mammals of the Gulf of Mexico, Bernd Würsig, Thomas A. Jefferson, and David J. Schmidly provide information on all known species, valuable identification tools, and up-to-date research on behavior, group sizes, reproduction, and underwater calls.
The introduction presents an overview of the whales, dolphins, pinnipeds, and other marine mammals of the world, discussing their basic biology and outlining their differences. The authors then describe the characteristics of the Gulf that affect the marine mammal species inhabiting it or entering its waters occasionally.
The main body of this important new guide provides a checklist of the species, keys to identification, and species descriptions of the marine mammals known or believed to occur in the Gulf. More than thirty color plates by marine artist Larry Foster and thirty-two color photographs illustrate these creatures.
Another important feature of this volume is a set of drawings of the skulls of all the Gulf species; these skull keys will enable individuals involved in Gulf Stranding Networks, volunteer operations that rescue and recover beached or stranded marine mammals, to easily identify species along the Gulf coast. Finally, the book discusses environmental problems of the Gulf as they affect marine mammals and considers the conservation and management tools needed to preserve them in their habitats. The Marine Mammals of the Gulf of Mexico will prove a useful reference for marine biologists, volunteers with scientific and rescue organizations, and anyone else interested in further study of these magnificent animals.
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Published by Texas A&M University Press