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Learn more about Cetaceans from the
of Michigan Animal Diversity Web or
- University of
California Museum of Paleontology
- Texas Marine Mammal Stranding
- Texas Cetaceans
The Order Cetartiodactyla is based on molecular evidence that hippopotamuses are
more closely related to whales than they are to other artiodactyls.
Early cetacean fossils from Pakistan demonstrate that whales are
artiodactyls. More from National
- Thewissen, J. G. M., E.M. Williams, L.J. Roe, and S.T. Hussain.
Skeletons of terrestrial cetaceans and the relationship of whales to artiodactyls, Nature
413: 277-281. Philip D. Gingerich, et al. 2001. Origin of
whales from early artiodactyls: Hands and feet of Eocene Protocetidae from Pakistan, Science,
Land to Water: the Origin of Whales, Dolphins, and Porpoises,
J. G. M. Thewissen, Lisa Noelle Cooper, John C. George and Sunil Bajpai,
2009, Evolution: Education and Outreach
- Whale Evolution from
- exclusively aquatic
- fusiform body with shortened neck and elongate tail [Figs. 19-4 - 19.5]
- tail modified into horizontal flukes (supported only by connective
- pelvic girdle reduced to vestigial
- paddle shaped anterior limbs [Fig. 19-6]
- highly modified, telescoped
skull [Fig. 19-7]
- external nares dorsally located [Fig. 19-3, 19-7]
- nares connects directly to lungs
adaptations from whales online
diving adaptations Gerald L. Kooyman and Paul J Ponganis
|Balaenopteridae (2, 6) Rorquals:
the fin backed and humpback whales
- gulpers [fig 19-12]
- Balaenoptera acutorostrata [minke] ;8-10 m, up to
9000 kg. Minke whales are the most numerous of the baleen
Balaenoptera musculus [blue whale]: up to 30 m, 200,000 kg
Megaptera novaeangliae [humpback whale] [Fig.
- Listen to
the songs of the humpback whale.
by Gerald and Buff Corsi � California Academy of Sciences
Ziphiidae (6, 19) Beaked whales
- A rare, complete Hubbs' Beaked Whale (Mesoplodon
carlhubbsi) skeleton is on display at Humboldt State
University. According to
the website article, "[b]eaked whales are among the least known of all living whales. This toothed whale lives offshore above deep ocean canyons in the Pacific Ocean between North America and Japan."
- Thanks to Drs. Brian Arbogast and Steven Smith
(pictured, third from left) of Humbolt State University for supplying
whaling from Wikipedia
Picture Wreck of the Essex. Detail of "Whaling Voyage Round the
World," ca.1848, a panorama by Benjamin Russell (1804-1885) and Caleb P.
Purrington; New Bedford Whaling Museum
whaling from Wikipedia