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Analysis of the microbial diversity in faecal material of the endangered blue whale, Balaenoptera musculus

Very few studies have looked at the bacterial diversity in whales (Herwig et al. 1984; Olsen et al. 1994, 2000; Sanders et al. 2015). To our knowledge, the bacterial diversity in blue whales has not been examined. In addition, the fungal diversity present in the faecal material of any whale species has not apparently been examined. In our study, approximately ≥98 % of the sequences mapped to the Firmicutes whilst a relatively small percentage of the sequences mapped to Bacteroidetes.

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