The Art of Science
Photo with 3 notes
(WWF) Critically endangered species
In the upper part of Mexico’s Gulf of California lives the world’s smallest porpoise, the vaquita. Rare and elusive, this little porpoise wasn’t discovered until 1958. Today, little is known about them. Vaquitas are most often found close to shore in the Gulf’s shallow waters, although they quickly swim away if a boat approaches.
The vaquita has a large dark ring around its eyes and dark patches on its lips that form a thin line from the mouth to the pectoral fins. Its dorsal surface is dark gray, sides pale gray and ventral surface white with long, light gray markings. Newborn vaquita have darker coloration and a wide gray fringe of color that runs from the head to the dorsal flukes, passing through the dorsal and pectoral fins.
Vaquita are under threat from the fishing industry. They often die after being caught in gillnets, a problem known as bycatch.
(more images and info at link)