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Recovery Strategy for Blue, Fin, and Sei Whales in Pacific Canadian Waters [Final]


13 Glossary of Terms

Anthropogenic:
involving the impact of man on nature.

Balaenopterid(s):
whales from the order Cetacea, suborder Mysticeti, family Balaenopteridae. Balaenopterids, together with the families Balaenidae and Eschrichtiidae comprise the baleen whales.

Baleen whale:
whales from the order Cetacea, suborder Mysticeti, with a fringe-like sieve called “baleen” to collect and retain food.

Baleen:
a horny substance growing in the mouth of whales of the suborder Mysticeti forming a fringe-like sieve to collect and retain food.

Biomass:
the amount of living matter in the form of one or more kinds of organisms present in a particular habitat.

Caudal peduncle:
the narrow region of the body immediately in front of the tail.

Cetacea:
the order containing whales, dolphins, and porpoises.

Cetacean:
of, or relating to, the Cetacea.

Chevrons:
two diagonal stripes meeting at an angle (‘^').

Conspecific(s):
of the same species.

Copepod:
a minute aquatic crustacean.

COSEWIC:
Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (www.COSEWIC.gc.ca).

Critical Habitat:
the habitat necessary for the survival and recovery of a listed wildlife species and that is identified as the species' critical habitat in the recovery strategy or in an action plan for the species.

Crustaceans:
a class of marine or freshwater arthropods, including lobsters, crabs, shrimps, water fleas and barnacles.

DFO:
Fisheries & Oceans Canada.

Ecological:
of, or having to do with, the environments of living things or with the pattern of relations between living things and their environments; of or relating to the interdependence of organisms.

Ecosystem:
an ecological community considered together with the nonliving factors of its environment considered as a unit.

Ectoparasite:
an external parasite.

Endangered:
facing imminent extirpation or extinction.

Endoparasite:
an internal parasite.

Euphausiids:
a family of small crustaceans resembling shrimp.

Extirpated:
no longer existing in the wild in Canada, but occurring elsewhere.

Fluke:
one of the lobes of a whale's tail.

Foraging:
to wander or rove in search of food.

Hydrophones:
an electroacoustic transducer for listening to sound transmitted through the water.

Immunotoxic:
poisonous to the immune system.

Krill:
planktonic crustaceans and larvae.

Longevity:
a long duration of individual life.

Mandible(s):
lower jaw, jawbones.  

Matrilineal:
relating to, based on, or tracing descent through the maternal line.

Mysticetes:
whales of the order Cetacea, suborder Mysticeti, comprising the baleen whales.

NMFS:
National Marine Fisheries Service (US).

Organochlorine:
of, relating to, or constituting an organic compound of chlorine.

Pathogenic:
causing, or capable of causing, disease.

Pelagic:
of, relating to, or living in the open ocean.

Piscivorous:
feeding on fishes.

Precautionary approach:
recognizing that the reduction or loss of the species should not be postponed for lack of full scientific certainty.

Primary production:
the first in order of development, as in plankton.

Regime:
a regular pattern of occurrence, as in weather or ocean conditions.

Recovery:
the process by which the decline of an endangered, threatened or extirpated species is stopped or reversed, and threats reduced to improve the likelihood of the species' persistence in the wild.

Rorquals:
whales of the family Balaenopteridae (Baleanopterids).

Rostrum:
the anterior projecting element of a baleen whale's skull.

SARA:
the Species at Risk Act.

Secondary production:
the second in order of development, as in those animals that feed on plankton.

Shelf-break:
of, or relating to, the edge of the continental shelf at which the sea floor begins to descend steeply toward the bottom of the ocean basin.

Synergistic:
such that the total effect is greater than the sum of the two or more effects taken independently.

Threatened:
likely to become endangered if limiting factors are not reversed.

Trophic:
of, or relating to, a (specified) type of nutrition.

Umbilicus:
a small depression in the middle of the abdomen marking the point of attachment of the umbilical cord (~navel).

Upwelling(s):
to well up, to move or flow upward, as in ocean currents.

Viable:
capable of living.

Zooplankton:
the passively floating or weakly swimming animal life of a body of water.