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Monday, March 5, 2012
Different Species of Dolphins

Dolphins are by far one of the most amazing sea creatures, and we are lucky enough to have a number of different species of dolphins out there in our waters. There are almost 40 species of dolphins known to man that are roaming our seas.

 One of the most common dolphin species found out there is the Long-Beaked and Short-Beaked Common Dolphin. These species of dolphins are medium in size, measuring up to 2.5 metres in length, and weighing up to 235 kilograms. They have an unusual colour pattern on them, making them easily identifiable. Their back is usually black, their belly white, and their sides grey, shaped in an hourglass pattern. They are found in warm temperate and tropical waters, such as the Black Sea, and the Pacific Ocean.

Another species of dolphin which is commonly found in Australian waters, particularly on the north east coast, is the Indo-Pacific Bottlenose Dolphin. As well as being found around the north east coast of Australia, it is also found around India, South China, the Red Sea, and the eastern coast line of Africa. This species of dolphin is similar in size to the common dolphin mentioned above; it grows up to 2.6 metres, and can weigh up to 230 kilograms. They look similar in appearance to the Bottlenose Dolphin, however, they tend to have a slenderer body and a longer beak. They are also a lighter blue colour, and often have black spots on their underside.

Furthermore, there is the common Bottlenose Dolphin, which is probably the most recognised dolphin out of the dolphin family. Much like the other two species of dolphins mentioned, this species also enjoys the warmer water, which is why they are most commonly found around north eastern Australia, and other tropical waters. They can grow up to nearly 4 metres in length, and can weigh up to 650 kilograms, making them quite a large dolphin. They are identified by their grey colouring, and their short and well-defined snout.

This species of dolphin and the Indo-Pacific are the dolphins most commonly found in the famous Moreton Bay, just off Queensland. Moreton Bay’s island resort, Tangalooma has a nightly dolphin feeding program, which allows visitors and tourists to the island to come and hand feed them every night.

These are just 3 of many, many species of dolphins roaming our seas. However, when swimming in Queensland waters, the Bottlenose and Indo-Pacific dolphin are the two species you are most likely to run into. 

Posted by Alex

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