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Burmeister’s Porpoise (Phocoena spinipinnis)

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PHYLUM: Chordata
CLASS: Mammalia
ORDER: Cetacea
FAMILY: Phocenidae
GENUS: Phocoena
SPECIES: spinipinnis

TOOTHED or TOOTHLESS (BALEEN): Toothed

FRESHWATER, SALTERWATER or BRACKISH: Saltwater

HABITAT: Along the coast of the southern portion of South America

LENGTH (maximum): 6Ft

WEIGHT (maximum): 172-250 lbs

RELATIVE SPECIES: Vaquita, Spectacled porpoise

OTHER NAMES: Marsopa espinosa

NEIGHBORING SPECIES: Franciscana, Spectacled porpoise, Chilean dolphin

This species is classified as DATE INCOMPLETE according to the IUCN's Red List.
This species is classified as DATE INCOMPLETE according to the IUCN’s Red List.

PREDATORS: Humans

THREATS: Trapped in fishing gear, used as food and bait, harpooned for sport.

DIET: Anchovies, hake, silverside, squid and even snails.

MANNER OF FEEDING: Unknown

BEHAVIOR: Travel alone or in pairs. Cryptic at the surface, and hard to observe. Will scatter when approached by a boat or vessel.

REPRODUCTION: High reproductive rate. Gestation lasts 11-12 months.

LIFE SPAN: At least 12 years

COOL/GROSS/WEIRD:

  • Usually, about two-thirds of all adult females are pregnant at any given time.
  • Referred to as “thorny porpoise” because of small projections located on the dorsal fin.

SOURCES:

  • Knopf, Alfred A. Guide to Marine Mammals of the World.Random House. 2002
  • http://www.cms.int/reports/small_cetaceans/data/p_spinipinnis/p_spinipinnis.htm

 

-TSF-

 
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