July 2017: Vaquita

Common Name: Vaquita
Scientific Name: Phocoena sinus
Status: Critically Endangered

The vaquita (Phocoena sinus) is the smallest member of the Phoecoenidae family, categorized within the Cetartiodactyla order. The vaquita is categorized as “critically endangered” by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species as it’s the most endangered marine mammal on the planet with approximately less than 30 individuals remaining in the wild today. As a solitary species, the vaquita is usually found alone, or as a mother and calf pairing. The vaquita is only found within the Gulf of California and prefers murky, shallow waters close to the coast. 

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