Dr. Jefferson has been studying marine mammals since 1983 when he was an undergraduate student. His main interests are the development of marine mammal identification aids and population ecology of the more poorly-known species of dolphins and porpoises. Conservation and management of marine mammals threatened by human activities is always a primary goal for Tom. His current research focuses on conservation biology of humpback dolphin (Sousa spp) and finless porpoise (Neophocaena spp). Tom is involved in many other projects, including the conservation of the critically-endangered vaquita (Phocoena sinus, only found in Mexico’s upper Gulf region.
In 2015, with co-authors Marc Webber and Robert Pitman, he published an identification guide: “Marine Mammals of the World” which has proud placement in Searcher‘s on-board library! He has authored over 160 books and papers on marine mammals and recently described a new species (Sousa sahulensis, the Australian humpback dolphin).