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dolphin Bottle-Nosed Dolphins

Identify It >   Marine Mammals Section >   Bottle-Nosed Dolphins >

bottle-nosed dolphins by Derek Corner

Scientific name:  Tursiops truncatus

Size:  Bottle-nosed dolphins grow to 3.5 metres in length, and can weigh up to 400 kilos

Distribution:  Bottle-nosed dolphins were once common but have declined in numbers around our shores. They tend to be found mainly off the south and west coasts of the UK, swimming fairly close to shores, in bays and estuaries.  Unfortunately the water in these areas can contain high levels of pollution.  This coupled with over-fishing around the U.K. may have been responsible for the reduction in their numbers.

Months seen:  All year round

Life span:  20 to 50 years (source Seaworld)

Habitat:  Open sea, and sometimes close to shore

Food:  Cod and salmon.  They often work together in a group to round up shoals of fish

Special features:  Bottle-nosed dolphins have a blue-grey coloured back and a whitish underside.  The dolphin in the photo above is exhibiting the typical behavior of jumping out of the water.  This is probably done to drive the fish in a certain direction, or it may just be for fun.

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