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Paper SC/59/O15 presented to the International Whaling Commission Scientific Committee, June 2007, Anchorage, Alaska, USA.


Addition of three species to the list is recommended based on recent literature. (Orcaella brevirostris) has been split into the Irrawaddy dolphin (O. brevirostris) and the Australian snubfin dolphin (O. heinsohni). Sotalia fluviatilis has been split into the riverine tucuxi (S. fluviatilis) and the marine "costero" (S. guianensis). Evidence to support both of these splits is convincing, and we recommend that they be recognized in the list. The existence of the Bryde's-whale-like species described in 2003 as Balaenoptera omurai has been confirmed with additional genetic (nuclear) data. While the species clearly exists, the nomenclature is still unsettled because the genetic identity of the holotype specimen of Balaenoptera edeni has not yet been determined. However, the name B. omurai is gaining wide usage in application to the new species, and we propose that it be used provisionally by the Scientific Committee pending the genetic identification of the B. edeni holotype. We recommend that India be urged to facilitate the identification. We recommend continued use of the name Balaenoptera edeni provisionally for both the "ordinary" large form and the small coastal form, recognizing that further genetic and morphological research may justify recognition of two species: B. brydei and B. edeni. We also recommend that any new specimen be referred to B. omurai only after its mtDNA has been sequenced and found to support the identification.