Bottlenose Dolphin

Tursiops truncatus

Habitat

Bottlenose dolphins can be found in temperate and tropical waters ranging between northern Japan and southern California to Australia and Chile in the Pacific ocean. They are usually seen within 20 miles off shore in harbors, bays, lagoons, and in large rivers.

Appearance

Bottlenose dolphins can 2- 3.9 meters long or 6.6- 12.8 feet. Their average weight is 150- 200 kilograms or 331.5- 442 pounds. Their skin is smooth and rubbery and they do not have any hair or sweat glands. Bottlenose dolphins are gray or dark gray on their backs and white on their lower jaw and belly.

Diet

Bottlenose dolphins are carnivores that eat a wide variety of fish, squids, and crustaceans. Some have even been found with deep sea fish in their stomachs. Adults eat about 4-6% of their body weight in food per day. A nursing mother eats about 8% of her body weight.

Threats

The threats to Bottle nose dolphins include diseases such as viral, bacterial, and fungal infections, stomach ulcers, skin diseases, tumors, heart diseases, urogenital disorders, and respiratory diseases. parasites that typically include tapeworm, flukes, and roundworms. Natural predators include large sharks such as tiger sharks, dusky sharks, bull sharks, and great white sharks. Killer whales also threaten the Bottlenose dolphins. Human threats include heavy boat traffic, habitat destruction, and pollution.

Reproduction

Bottlenose dolphins become sexually mature around 5 to 12 years old. Male and female dolphins have multiple mates in one reproductive season. During courtship, they engage in head butting and tooth scratching. The young dolphins are raised by their mothers until they are mature enough take care of themselves. The father dolphins usually leave after mating with the mothers.

Communication

Bottlenose dolphins communicate using echo location, which is making clicking sounds by using air movements through their nasal passages.
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Lizzy Gump & Alec Laird