Whales, dolphins, and other marine mammals of the world / Hadoram Shirihai ; illustrated by Brett Jarrett ; edited by Guy M. Kirwan ; editorial consultants, Graeme Cresswell ... [et al.] ; maps by Kelly Macleod, Dylan Walker and Julie Dando
Kirwan, Guy M
384 p. : col. ill., col. maps ; 22 cm
Preface -- What is a marine mammal? -- Main groups of marine mammals -- Modern taxonomy of marine mammals -- How to look for marine mammals -- Natural history of marine mammals -- Conservation -- How to use this book -- The illustrations -- The maps -- Species accounts -- Sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus) -- Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) -- Grey whale (Eschrichtius robustus) -- Right whales -- North Atlantic Right whale (Eubalaena glacialis) -- North Pacific Right whale (Eubalaena japonica) -- Southern Right whale (Eubalaena australis) -- Bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus) -- Pgymy Right whale (Caperea marginata) -- Rorquals with streamlined bodies -- Blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus) -- Fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus) -- Sei whale (Balaenoptera borealis) -- Bryde's whale (Balaenoptera edeni) -- Omura's whale (Balaenoptera omurai) -- Northern Minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) -- Dwarf Minke whale (Balaenoptera [acutorostrata] species/allospecies) -- Antarctic minke whale (Balaenotera bonaerensis) -- Killer whale (Orcinus orca) -- Pilot whale : the large 'blackfish' -- Short-finned Pilot whale (Globicephala macrorhynchus) -- Long-finned Pilot whale (Globicephala melas) -- Small 'blackfish" whales and Risso's dolphin -- Pygmy Killer whale (Feresa attenuata) -- Melon-headed whale (Peponocephala electra) -- False killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens) -- Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus) --
Cephalorhynchus dolphins -- Commerson's dolphin (Cephalorhynchus commersonii) -- Chilean dolphin (Cephalorhynchus eutropia) -- Haviside's (Heaviside's) dolphin (Cephalorhynchus heavisidii) -- Hector's dolphin (Cephalorhynchus hectori) -- Right whale dolphins -- Northern Right whale dolphin (Lissodelphis borealis) -- Southern Right whale dolphin (Lissodelphis peronii) -- River dolphins and Tucuxi -- Tucuxi (Sotalia fluviatilis) -- Franciscana (Pontoporia blainvillei) -- Amazon River dolphin (Ilia geoffrensis) -- Ganges River dolphin (Platanista [gangetica] gangetica) -- Indus River dolphin (Platanista [gangetica] minor) -- Chinese River dolphin (Lipotes vexillifer) -- Australian Snubfin and Irrawaddy dolphins -- Australian Snubfin dolphin (Orcaella heinsohni) -- Irrawaddy dolphin (Orcaella brevirostris) -- Porpoises -- Finless porpoise (Neophocaena phocaenoides) -- Spectacled porpoise (Phocoena dioptrica) -- Harbour porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) -- Gulf of California porpoise (Phocoena sinus) -- Burmeister's porpoise (Phocoena spinipinnis) -- Dall's porpoise (Phocoenoides dalli) -- Sirenians (Sea cows) --
Dugong (Dugong dugon) -- Steller's Sea cow (Hydrodamalis gigas) -- Amazonian Manatee (Trichechus inunguis) -- West Indian Manatee (Trichechus manatus) -- West African Manatee (Trichechus senegalensis) -- Fur seals of Northern/mid-latitudes -- Northern Fur seal (Callorhinus ursinus) -- Guadalupe Fur seal (Arctocephalus townsendi) -- South American Fur seal (Arctocephalus australis) -- Galápagos Fur seal (Arctocephalus galapagoensis) -- Juan Fernández Fur seal (Arctocephalus philippii) -- Fur seals of the Southern Ocean -- South African and Australian Fur seals (Arctocephalus pusillus) -- New Zealand Fur seal (Arctocephalus forsteri) -- Antarctic Fur seal (Arctocephalus gazella) -- Subantarctic Fur seal (Arctocephalus tropicalis) -- Sea lions -- California and Galapagos Sea lions (Zalophus californianus) -- South American Sea lions (Otaria byronia) -- Australian Sea lion (Neophoca cinerea) -- New Zealand Sea lion (Phocarctos hookeri) -- Northern Sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus) --
Northern True seals -- Northern Elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris) -- Hooded seal (Cystophora cristata) -- Grey seal (Halichoerus grypus) -- Harp seal (Pagophilus groenlandicus) -- Ribbon seal (Histriophoca fasciata ) -- Bearded seal (Erignathus barbatus) -- Ringed seal (Pusa hispida) -- Largha seal (Phoca largha) -- Harbour seal (Phoca vitulina) -- Mid-latitude True seals -- Caspian seal (Pusa caspica) -- Baikal seal (Pusa sibirica) -- Mediterranean Monk seal (Monachus monachus) -- Hawaiian Monk seal (Monachus schauinslandi) -- West Indian Monk seal (Monachus tropicalis) -- Subantarctic and Antarctic True seals -- Southern Elephant seal (Mirounga leonina) -- Leopard seal (Hydrurga leptonyx) -- Crabeater seal (Lobodon carcinophaga) -- Weddell seal (Leptonychotes weddellii) -- Ross seal (Ommatophoca rossii) -- Arctic animals -- Walrus (Odobenus rosmarus) -- Polar bear (Ursus maritimus) -- Otters -- Sea otter (Enhydra lutris) -- Marine otter (Lutra felina) -- Glossary -- Selected marine mammal sites -- Europe -- Eastern North America -- Western North America -- Latin America -- Australia and New Zealand -- Indian Ocean and Asia -- Conversation checklist -- Selected bibliography -- Photographic credits -- Index
Antarctic Seals Keep Trying to Have Sex With Penguins
Smithsonian staff publications
Mon, 17 Nov 2014 20:00:24 +0000
Blog Post Category:
Smart News Science
The remote Marion island was the scene of the first, bizarre incident. Antarctic fur seals typically eat krill, fish, squid and the occasional bird—including penguins. But this particular young adult male was not eating the king penguin. He was attempting to have sex with it, according to the BBC.
Now, the same behavior has been captured on film three more times and reported in the scientific journal Polar Biology. And the researchers are puzzled. The first instance could have been chalked up to a sexually inexperienced male targeting the closest thing to a female seal he could find—a case of misdirected mating. Or it could have been a hunt gone strange. But the three new reports suggest that sex with penguins might be a behavior that is spreading among fur seals in the region, writes Matt Walker for the BBC.
In all the cases, a larger seal chased down a penguin, mounted it and tried to copulate. Walker reports:
Male and female penguins mate via an opening called a cloaca, and the seals are thought to have actually penetrated the penguins in some of the acts, which were caught on film by [research team leader William A. Haddad].
In three of the four recorded incidents the seal let the penguin go. But on one of the more recent occasions, the seal killed and ate the penguin after trying to mate with it.
"I genuinely think the behavior is increasing in frequency," says Nico de Bruyn, a researcher at the Mammal Research Institute at the University of Pretoria, South Africa. He thinks that seals may see other males trying to have sex with penguins and imitate them—either for practice or because they have no other way to release sexual frustration. The individuals they recorded were all too young to have their own harems of females.
This isn’t the first time we’ve found animals engaging, or attempting to engage, in interspecies coitus. Researchers have observed male sea otters in Monterey Bay capturing and copulating with baby harbor seals and killing them in the process. And dolphins are notoriously violent in their sexual acts. Males will gang up on females and go after humans.
It’s difficult not to let human morals color our perception of such acts. Even scientists, who strive to note these behaviors objectively, sometimes fall short when detailing the varied sexual behavior in the animal kingdom. George Murray Levick, who accompanied the 1910-1913 Scott Antarctic Expedition, never published his findings about Adélie penguins and attempted to obscure them by writing in Greek. The behavior that so shocked him was males copulating with other males, injured females, chicks and corpses, reports Brian Switek for Slate.
Somehow, when animal sexual acts result in offspring, the thought is less off-putting. Successful interspecies breeding is called hybridization and has given us pizzlies in the wild (polar bear and grizzly hybrids), mules and zonkeys domestically and … modern humans. Neanderthal genes left in our genome are testament to that interbreeding.
But ascribing human motivation to these behaviors isn’t correct. "There is no animal that is made of rainbows and kisses and goodness all the way through," Switek writes.