The life of whales and dolphins, with a special focus on Arabian Sea Humpback whales, India
Mammals returned to water from land about 65-53mya from at least three different terrestrial mammalian groups, and are thus a product of convergent evolution. Evolution that over time, created the deepest diving warm blooded mammals on earth such as Cuvier's beaked whales and sperm whales. Anatomical, physiological, behavioral adaptations led to this highly specialised taxonomical group that is formed of Mysticetes (Baleen whales), Odontocetes(toothed whales), Pinnipeds, Sirenians (includes Dugongs and Manatees) and the Polar bear. In my talk I shall introduce you to them and their world. We shall then focus on India, and the marine mammal richness of the sub-continent, the huge gaps in knowledge, and shall end with the little we know of a few species such as Humpback dolphins, finless porpoises and te Arabian Sea Humpback whales.
About The Speaker:
Dipani Sutaria is an environmentalist and ecologist who studies aquatic systems and mega fauna such as whales, dolphins, sharks and rays in India. She is a Senior Research Fellow at JCU, Australia, a member of the IUCN Cetacean Specialist Group, the Society of Marine Mammalogy International Affairs committee, and IUCN Marine Mammal Protected Area Task Force. As an independent researcher she advises MSc and PhD students in India and abroad. Based in Ahmedabad, she also teaches ecology to students of architecture, design and planning at CEPT. Caring for her nursery of native flora and her large family of non-human creatures keeps her grounded.