PORPOISE VERTEBRA 1.jpg
Miocene Age (5.3-23 Million Years Ago)
Porpoises are a group of fully aquatic marine mammals that are sometimes referred to as mereswine, all of which are classified under the family Phocoenidae, parvorder Odontoceti (toothed whales). There are six extant species of porpoise. They are small toothed whales that are very closely related to oceanic dolphins. The most obvious visible difference between the two groups is that porpoises have shorter beaks and flattened, spade-shaped teeth distinct from the conical teeth of dolphins. Porpoises, and other cetaceans, belong to the clade Cetartiodactyla with even-toed ungulates, and their closest living relatives are the hippopotamuses, having diverged from them about 40 million years ago.