The Pacific Ocean is home to at least 37 species of marine mammals. Hawaiian monk seals live mostly in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Six reproductive populations thrive at French Frigate Shoals, Laysan Island, Lisianski Island, Pearl and Hermes Reef, Midway Atoll and Kure Atoll. Some of the populations are housed at Necker Island and Nihoa Island but are limited in reproduction and migrate to other areas.
The California sea lion, harbor seal, northern elephant seal, Guadalupe fur seal, Northern fur seal and the Hawaiian monk seal populate the shores from California to the Oregon and Washington coast, and from Mexico to Hawaii.
Harbor porpoise and Dall’s porpoise stick to the cooler waters of the California, Washington and Oregon coastlines. In related species, certain dolphin can also be found in these waters. The Pacific white-sided dolphin, Risso’s dolphin, the bottlenose dolphin, striped dolphin, common long and short-beaked dolphins and the Northern right whale dolphin all reside through California, Oregon and Washington waters as well.
The cooler waters of these states are also the perfect grounds for many whale species. Throughout them you can find killer whales, pilot short-finned whales, Baird’s beaked whale, Mesoplodont beaked whales, pygmy sperm whale, dwarf sperm whale, sperm whale, and the fin whale. The blue whale is attracted to a bit warmer temperatures as in the waters of California and Mexico.
Heading into warmer tropical waters of the eastern tropical and eastern north Pacific, Bryde’s whales and the Sei whale species spout happily, juxtaposed the minke whale which are in the cooler waters of the Pacific northwest region as the sperm whale, dwarf sperm whale and others.
Moving toward Hawaiian waters, the rough-toothed dolphin, Risso’s dolphin, bottlenose dolphin, pantropical spotted, spinner, and striped dolphin species enjoy the warm blue Pacific. The melon-headed whale, pygmy killer whale, false killer whale, killer whale, pilot whale, Blainville’s beaked whale, Cuvier’s beaked whale, pygmy sperm whale, dwarf sperm whale, and the sperm whale thrive in these waters as well.