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Many people love seals and sea lions, and it's easy to see why: they’re playful, adorable, and quite photogenic. But what is the difference between seals and their cousins the sea lions? Both have...
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Humpback whales ( Megaptera novaengliae ) are the most abundant baleen whale in...
In the late 1990's, researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (...
Killer whales ( Orcinus orca ) are master hunters, using speed, camouflage, and...

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Every North Atlantic right whale has a pattern of callosities unique to that individual. This distinctive pattern provides a very visual, convenient tool that researchers can use to tell one individual from another. Learn more...
The false killer whale (pdf) ( Pseudorca crassidens ) is a large dolphin...
Lying on the ice with a few friends is not an unusual way to spend time for...

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Stretching up to 16.8 meters (55 feet) long and weighing up to 62 tons (70 tons), the North Atlantic right whale is one of...
Watch a recorded webcast about the latest efforts in Greece to study and save the critically endangered Mediterranean monk seal. Centuries of human exploitation and habitat destruction have caused...
Sirenians , or seacows, are a group of marine mammals that include manatees and dugongs . Currently, only a single species of seacow is found anywhere in the world. However, the fossil record of...
In the late 1990's, researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) invented the D-Tag —a radio device that can be attached by suction cups to a whale's back. Using a tiny underwater...
An early scale model of North Atlantic right whale Phoenix that was used to develop a life size model for the Smithsonian shows the location of scars on her mouth from entanglements with fishing gear...
A right whale opens its mouth wide, revealing huge plates of baleen hanging from its upper jaw. There are between 200 and 270 baleen plates on each side of a right whale's upper jaw. They work like a...
In honor of Mother's Day, the Citizens of the Sea blog salutes ocean-going mothers everywhere. Especially a 60 year-old albatross named Wisdom. She holds the seabird records for both oldest bird and...
Toothed whales, like this common dolphin ( Delphinus delphis ) and its calf, live in social groups called pods. The mother and calf form a pair that shares a long-term bond. Read more about toothed...
For nearly 35 years, National Geographic photojournalist Brian Skerry has been immersing himself in the big blue to get the perfect underwater photograph. He admits that there will never will be a "...
January 14, 1987: Phoenix is first spotted as she swims with her mother, Stumpy, off the coast of Georgia. More about right whales can be found in our Tale of a whale featured story .
Two North Atlantic right whales ( Eubalaena glacialis ) swim at the surface of the water. Learn more about this species in the North Atlantic Right Whale section.
Illustrator Drew Christie created this light-hearted short film about how humans could really learn something from whales. Check it out and learn about all the different cetaceans and our...
Male northern elephant seals face off on the beach by vocalizing through their extended noses, called proboscises. Every winter, when the seals return to the beach where they were born to breed,...
"Wild manatees in Belize are not used to humans. Living miles offshore in mangroves, they remain shy and elusive. After weeks searching and waiting for an opportunity to photograph them, I was...
A team from the Center for Coastal Studies works to free a one-year-old right whale from the fishing ropes wrapped and knotted around its body and flippers. The whale is Kingfisher, #3346 in the...
I have a vivid childhood memory of sitting under the Blue Whale model hanging in the Natural History Museum in London, eating an ice cream and wondering “How in the world did that whale get so big?”...
A Twelve-Step group for wild animals with people-food addictions? Don’t be responsible for getting a dolphin hooked on human handouts! This cartoon satire portrays a dolphin trying to break his...
An early scale model of North Atlantic right whale Phoenix indicates the location of scars on her tail from entanglements with fishing gear. More about the right whale can be found in our Tale of a...
The Baird's beaked whale is a species of toothed whale. Most toothed whales (which also include dolphins, killer whales and porpoises) live in social groups called pods. Read more about toothed...
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