Glossary - V
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V

vacuum
a space from which all gas and other matter has been removed
vaquita
Phocoena sinus
variance
an estimate of the variability of a set of measurements about the mean value; it is calculated by subtracting the mean from each of the measurements, squaring the differences, adding all of the squared differences together, and dividing by one less than the total number of measurements; the square root of the variance is the standard deviation.
vector
a quantity, such as a velocity or force, that has both magnitude and direction.
velocity
the linear speed of an object in a specified direction.
ventral
of, pertaining to, or situated at the back or upper side.
vertebrate
having vertebrae or having a backbone or spinal column. Fish and humans are examples of vertebrates.
vertical migration
a pattern of movement that some marine organisms undertake each day. Usually organisms move to shallow waters at night and return to deeper waters during the day.
vestibular system
a fluid-filled maze of canals and chambers inside the inner ear that helps maintain orientation and balance.
viscosity
a molecule's resistance to motion
vital rates
relative frequencies of vital occurrences that affect changes in the size and composition of a population, such as birth rate or death rate
vocal cords
Small bands of tissue within the larynx that vibrate (when air passes over them) to produce the sound.
vocal fold ligament
connective tissue that strengthens the vocal folds via stiffness and support
vocal learning
the modification of an animal’s vocalization(s) based on acoustic signals in its environment, such as vocalizations by conspecifics.
vocalizations
sounds intentionally produced by animals that may be used for communication, navigation, and feeding. In humans, air is moved from the lungs and across the vocal folds (also known as vocal cords). The vibration of the vocal folds produce sounds that are formed into words and other vocal communication signals. We do not know how sound is produced by many species of marine mammals. The term vocalization is commonly used to refer to sounds that are produced by marine mammals; however, the use of the word vocalization does not imply that marine animals are using vocal folds to produce the sounds.
vulnerable
susceptible to being hurt or damaged.