Although very different phylogenetically, marine mammals are similar in their reliance on a fully aquatic environment as mammals. Marine mammals include the taxonomic orders Sirenia (manatees and dugongs), Pinnipeda (seals and sea lions), Mustelidae (Sea otters), Cetacea (dolphins and whales), and Ursidae (polar bears). This entry will explain how marine mammals have evolved against many evolutionary challenges and how these adaptations have resulted in varying life history strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Ocean Sciences
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9780128130810
ISBN (Print)9780128130827
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019


  • Adaptation
  • Cetaceans
  • Conservation
  • Evolution
  • Mammals
  • Mustelids
  • Pinnipeds
  • Sirenians
  • Ursids


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