Alicia Graef | Care2 | Reader Supported News | May 14, 2016
onservationists took legal action this week to get protection for one of the most endangered species of whales on Earth.
The whales in question are a a genetically distinct population of Bryde’s whales who were only recently discovered. Bryde’s whales can be found in tropical and subtropical waters around the world, but these whales are year-round residents of the Gulf of Mexico who live mainly in the DeSoto Canyon, off the Florida panhandle.
Genetic testing conducted by the National Marine Fisheries Service’s Southeast Fisheries Science Center recently concluded these whales are a genetically distinct subspecies, if not an entirely new species altogether. In addition to being genetically unique, they also have a distinctive song unlike the calls of other Bryde’s whales and are the only baleen whales living in the Gulf.