Dolphin Facts, Types, Classification, Habitat, Diet, Adaptations

Dolphins are aquatic mammals of the infraorder Cetacea that constitutes five families, including oceanic dolphins, the indian river dolphins, brackish dolphins, the New World river dolphins, and the extinct Chinese river dolphins. Research has shown that the ancestors of today ’ randomness dolphins were land-dwelling mammals, which became fully aquatic approximately 39-44 million years ago .

Scientific Classification

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla

Scientific Classification

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla

Types of Dolphins

Types of Dolphins

List of Common Types of Dolphin Species

There are about 40 species of dolphins living today, divided into four extant families, including Platanistidae, Delphinidae, Iniidae, and Pontoporiidae. Some of the normally found dolphin species are listed below :

  • Common
    bottlenose dolphin
  • La
    Plata dolphin
  • Short-beaked
    common dolphin
  • Long-beaked
    common dolphin
  • Burrunan
    dolphin
  • Indo-Pacific
    bottlenose dolphin
  • Southern
    right whale dolphin
  • Northern
    right whale dolphin
  • Guiana
    dolphin
  • Indo-Pacific
    humpbacked dolphin
  • Australian
    humpback dolphin
  • Atlantic
    humpback dolphin
  • Clymene
    dolphin
  • Atlantic
    spotted dolphin
  • Spinner
    dolphin
  • Pantropical
    spotted dolphin
  • Striped
    dolphin
  • Chilean
    dolphin
  • Rough-toothed
    dolphin
  • Fraser’s
    dolphin
  • Commerson’s
    dolphin
  • Hector’s
    dolphin
  • Risso’s
    dolphin
  • Atlantic
    white-sided dolphin
  • Hourglass
    dolphin
  • Dusky
    dolphin
  • Pacific
    white-sided dolphin
  • Peale’s
    dolphin
  • White-beaked
    dolphin
  • Australian
    snubfin dolphin
  • Irrawaddy
    dolphin
  • Killer
    whale
  • Melon-headed
    whale
  • False
    killer whale
  • Pygmy
    killer whale
  • Long-finned
    pilot whale
  • Short-finned
    pilot whale
  • Araguaian
    river dolphin
  • Amazon
    river dolphin
  • South
    Asian river dolphin
  • Tucuxi
  • Bolivian
    river dolphin

DolphinDolphin

Physical Description and Appearance

Size : Dolphin species exhibit diverse sizes, ranging from the smallest Maui ’ s dolphinfish with a distance of 5.6 foot ( 1.7 molarity ) to the largest killer whales or killer whale, measuring 31 foot ( 9.5 meter ). several species like the long-beaked park dolphins display sexual dimorphism, with the males being more full-bodied and longer than females .
Dolphin SizeDolphin Size Weight : The system of weights of dolphins varies depending on the species, with the Maui ’ sulfur dolphinfish weighing 50 kilogram ( 110 pound ) and killer whales having a weight unit of 10 tons ( 22,046 pound ) .
Color : They can have divers semblance combinations. The Amazon river dolphinfish, for example, is grey-pink or bright pink, while the killer giant and Commerson ’ sulfur dolphins have a mix of black and white. common dolphins come with a shade of dark grey and white .
Body : Dolphins have streamlined bodies, along with non-flexible necks, modified flippers, a tail fin, non-existent ear flaps, and bulblike heads .
Teeth : unlike porpoises, dolphins possess conic tooth for catching quick-moving prey, including pisces, squid, and varnish. The count of tooth varies widely across species, with the killer whale carrying 40-56 teeth, bottlenose dolphins having 72-116 teeth, and the common dolphins possessing 188-268 teeth .
Dolphin TeethDolphin Teeth Genitals : The generative organs occur inside their bodies, with the genital slits being located on the side of their belly. Males own two genital slits, while the females have one .
Dolphin EyesDolphin Eyes

Distribution

Dolphins are widely distributed and found in all of the worldly concern ’ mho oceans and some rivers. Although these aquatic mammals can inhabit the cold sub-Antarctic and antarctic waters, most species prefer live in warm tropical areas .

What kind of habitats are dolphins found in

Their habitat varies depending on food handiness and environmental factors. While most of them are found in seawater, some species of dolphins thrive in fresh water. Dolphins are normally seen in bays, creeks, rivers, inlets, shallow waters along the coast, and at great depths in oceans .
Dolphin HabitatDolphin Habitat

How long do they live

In enslavement, the average life of dolphins is entirely about 20-25 years, although there have been instances of cause of death whales living more than 30 years with two orcas, Lolita and Corky II, surviving up to their mid-40s. rampantly dolphins have higher life expectancies, with the females living roughly 45 years on average, and sometimes up to 75-80 years. The males live for 31 years on average but can survive up to 55-60 years .

What do they eat

Dolphins typically feed on fish and squid, although the killer whale and false killer whales besides eat other sea mammals, such as dugongs and seals. occasionally, killer whale besides hunt whales bigger than themselves .

Behavior

  • They
    are highly social mammals, usually living in groups (or pods) consisting of up
    to 12 individuals, though the size and structure of these groups can vary depending
    on the species and locations. Groups can merge temporarily in places with an abundance
    of food. These superpods may comprise more than 1,000 dolphins.
  • These
    aquatic mammals form strong social bonds, as they stay with individuals that
    are ill or injured, often bringing them to the surface to help them breathe.
  • Dolphins
    can produce a wide range of sounds, including frequency-modulated whistles and
    burst-pulsed sounds for communication. They also use touch and posturing for
    nonverbal communication.
  • They
    display cultural behavior, something that is exhibited by humans and primate
    species. In 2005, Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins were found teaching their
    babies to cover their snouts using sponges for protecting them while foraging.
  • Dolphins
    often jump above the water surface while traveling. This activity, called
    porpoising, is done for social displays, orientation, entertainment, nonverbal
    communication, dislodging parasites, and saving energy.

Adaptations

  • Their
    skin can adapt to harsh climate because of a thick layer of fat or blubber that
    provide insulation from cold. It is also used for obtaining energy when food is
    scarce.
  • They
    have limbs that are modified into flippers, comprising four digits, which they
    use for steering. Their boneless dorsal fin is used for stability while the
    tail fin helps them to swim and propel forward.
  • Some
    dolphins are capable of slowing down their heart rate for conserving oxygen, helping
    them to dive deep in the ocean. They can also re-direct blood from the tissues
    (that can tolerate water pressure) to the brain, heart, and other organs.
  • The
    forehead of dolphins has a specialized organ, called melon, made of fat for
    sending out clicks, which is a high-frequency sound used for communication.
  • Dolphins
    usually have slightly flattened corneas, enlarged pupils, and moderately flat
    eyeballs to enable large amounts of light pass through their eyes, giving a clear
    image of their surroundings.

How do they Reproduce and Mate

Dolphins are polygynous, meaning the males mate with more than one female every year, while the females mate every 2-3 years. sexual intercourse is broadly brief, occurring belly to belly, frequently happening quite a few times within a short interval. The pregnancy period varies among dolphin species, ranging from 11-12 months in the tucuxis to approximately 17 months in the killer whale. They typically give parturition to one young in the spring or summer months, with the calf bear stern first. Young dolphins normally become sexually active before reaching sexual maturity, which occurs at about 8-13 years of old age.

Baby DolphinBaby Dolphin

Conservation

several organizations, such as the Hong Kong Dolphin Conservation Society ( HKDCS ) and the Whale and Dolphin Conservation ( WDC ), have been set up for their security and benefit. The Mote Marine Laboratory, a Florida-based research arrangement, work on rescue and rehabilitation of hurt, sick, or orphaned dolphins. Countries like India have declared it as the national aquatic animal to save the Ganges river dolphin from extinction. The Vikramshila Dolphin Sanctuary has been established for their protection .

Dolphin-FAQs

1. Are orcas dolphins?
Yes. Orcas are the largest dolphinfish species .
2. How do dolphins sleep?
Dolphins normally sleep with one of their brain hemispheres in a trench rest at a particular moment, remaining conscious enough to breathe and be leery of the presence of predators or early threats. captive dolphins enter a submit of abstruse sleep with both eyes closed, automatic pistol breathing, and no response to a mild stimulation .
3. How smart are dolphins?
Scientists have shown that dolphins have a high tied of news, demonstrating self-awareness, empathy, initiation, problem-solving ability, playfulness, teaching skills, grief, and gladden. They are besides known for their fantastic apery skills and agile memorize ability .
4. Is a dolphin a fish?
No
5. Do dolphins have hair?
Baby dolphins have whiskers on their beak, but they lose them soon after birth .
6. Are dolphins endangered?
Some dolphin species, such as the Indus river dolphin, Ganges river dolphin, and Hector ’ randomness dolphin, are endangered .
7. How fast can a dolphin swim?
These aquatic mammals are firm swimmers. The killer whale, for exercise, can swim with a top accelerate of 55.5 kph ( 34.5 miles per hour ) .
8. What is a group of dolphins
called?

A pod or school
9. How long can dolphins hold their
breath?

On average, dolphins can remain submerge, holding their breath for 8-10 minutes. however, individuals have been observed to stay submerged for approximately 15 minutes .
10. What is a baby dolphin called?

A calf or pup
Dolphin AnimalDolphin Animal

Interesting Facts

  • Their sense of hearing is extraordinarily well developed, and they can hear both in air and under the surface of water. Some dolphins stay alive even after becoming blind.
  • Dolphins are often held captive and trained to obey commands and perform tricks. Common dolphin species kept in captivity include bottlenose dolphins and killer whales.
  • These fascinating aquatic mammals have also appeared in literature and movies like Free Willy.
  • In the Faroe Islands and some parts of Japan, dolphins are traditionally eaten and killed in drive hunts.
  • The coat of arms of Romania, Anguilla, and Barbados feature dolphins.
  • Dolphins sometimes exhibit non-reproductive sexual behavior, including masturbation or stimulation of the genitals of other individuals with the flippers or rostrum, and homosexual contact.
  • Male dolphins may show aggressive behavior towards both males and females, resorting to violent sexual encounters or ‘rape’ for asserting authority. Dolphins have also been observed to behave sexually towards humans.
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