We review patterns of extinction in marine mammals, emphasizing modern cases. We detail both known recent extinctions and taxa or populations known to be in jeopardy of extinction. Cases of extinction or jeopardy fall into two categories: one driven largely by excessive commercial hunting and the second driven by a suite of risk factors associated with expanding human populations. Recovery of jeopardized cases in the first group is attainable by rigorously conservative management. Recovery of cases in the second group requires restraint in human development on an unprecedented scale and appears generally intractable.
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