Thursday, 18 December 2014

Study on world's biggest animal finds more than one population in the southeastern Pacific

December 18, 2014

Wildlife Conservation Society

Scientists are examining molecular clues to answer a big question: how many types of blue whales exist in the waters of the southeastern Pacific?

The answer seems to be two distinct populations, according to a genetic study comparing the blue whales off the southern coast of Chile with those swimming in the waters of Antarctica and other nearby regions. One of the populations could be made up of pygmy-type blue whales, a subspecies slightly smaller than the Antarctic blue whale. The findings could help wildlife managers devise more effective conservation plans for this endangered species.

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