The Vaquita, literally “little cow” in Spanish, is a species of porpoise endemic to the northern end of the Gulf of California. Averaging 150 cm (for females) or 140 cm (for males) in length, it is the smallest of all existing cetaceans.
Today, the species is on the brink of extinction. Recent research concludes the population at less than 10 individuals. The steep decline in abundance is primarily due to bycatch in gillnets from the illegal totoaba fishery. [source]
The vaquita is classified as critically endangered on the IUCN Red List. Today, this is the most endangered marine mammal in the world. VaquitaCPR is trying to protect the species but the outlook is grim. Learn more about the conservation efforts here.