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Duke Marine Robotics and Remote Sensing Lab

But certain interventions, such as hunting bans and conservation efforts by different countries, have also brought some marine species back from the brink, according to the researchers.

Here are 4 marine mammals bouncing back from extinction, and a few ways that we can save even more.

Craig Hayslip, Marine Mammal Institute, Oregon State University

4. Humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae)

Rob Harcourt

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3. Guadalupe fur seals (Arctocephalus townsendi)

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2. Northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris)

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Named for its huge size and trunk-like nose, there were just 100 northern elephant seals left in 1910. They were even mistakenly declared extinct in the 1880s. The seals have made a remarkable comeback, recovering to their original population size before human hunting.

1. West Indian manatees (Trichechus manatus)

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Although the adorable creatures nicknamed “sea cows” are considered vulnerable by the IUCN, and manatee deaths have been high in Florida this year, conservation efforts centered around the West Indian manatee mean that the species will likely be safe from extinction in the near future, scientists say.

IUCN Red List

Scientists say there’s one critical way the general public can save these animals — by practicing “citizen science” through our smartphones.

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Read more animal stories.

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