- A First for Marine Mammals Photo
What do you get when you mix a spinner and striped dolphin? The answer isn’t a punch line, but a new species – the clymene dolphin. The new species is a product of natural hybridization, a process more commonly reserved for plants, fishes, and birds, but quite rare in mammals.
The classification of the clymene dolphin has been an ongoing process. Originally, it was considered a subspecies of the spinner dolphin; in 1981, scientists recognized it as a unique species. New genetic results have provided clear answers to some of the outstanding questions that clouded the distinction of the small, sleek dolphin.
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- R. Pitman