Marine Mammals

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Marine Mammal Conservation

Sharon Herzog

COM/172-Elements of University Composition and Communications II

July 28, 2013
Timothy Toole

Marine Mammal Conservation

There are 29 marine mammals on the endangered and threatened list produced by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The US Fisheries and Wildlife foundation also have a list that includes certain seals, sea otters, and polar bears. There are many threats to marine mammals. These threats include dangers posed by humans and the environment. There are laws in place to help protect marine mammals from further dangers. Captivity has brought forth much controversy as to dangers it may pose to marine mammals. Marine mammal habitat conservation may be the only answer to protecting marine mammal life. There are five characteristic that an animal must possess to be classified as a mammal. These characteristics include being warm-blooded, having hair or fur, having the ability to breathe air through lungs, the ability to bear live young, and the ability to nurse their young with milk produced by mammary glands (The Marine Mammal Center, 2013). Marine mammals also have a thick layer of fat called blubber that they rely on to keep them warm in the water. They have the ability to store up extra oxygen to aid them in staying under water for extended periods of time. Marine mammals spend a lot of time swimming, their bodies are streamlined to help them swim faster. One of the most important characteristics of marine mammals is their ability to direct their blood flow to their heart and lungs and slow their heartbeat down to preserve oxygen when diving (The Marine Mammal Center, 2013). There are five groups of marine mammals. Pinnipeds, Cetaceans, Sirenians, Polar Bears and Sea Otters. The Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration lists 29 different species on their…...

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