Delphinus delphis ( Photo: Protected Resouces Division, Southwest Fisheries Science Center, La Jolla, California. swfsc.nmfs.noaa.gov/PRD/")
Delphinus delphis Linnaeus, 1758
* Delphinus delphis on Mammal Species of the World.
The Short-beaked Common Dolphin (Delphinus delphis) is a species of common dolphin. It has a larger range than the Long-beaked Common Dolphin (D. capensis), occurring throughout warm-temperate and tropical oceans, with the possible exception of the Indian Ocean. There are more Short-beaked Common Dolphins than any other dolphin species in the warm-temperate portions of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. It is also found in the Caribbean and Mediterranean Seas.
The Short-beaked Common dolphin is a medium sized dolphin, smaller than the more popular bottlenose dolphin. Adults range between 1.6 and 2 metres (5.2 and 6.6 ft), long, and can weigh between 70 and 235 kilograms (150 and 520 lb), although a range between 70 and 110 kilograms (150 and 240 lb) is more common. Males are generally longer and heavier. The color pattern on the body is unusual. The back is dark and the belly is white, while on each side is an hourglass pattern colored light grey, yellow or gold in front and dirty grey in back. It has a long, thin rostrum with up to 50–60 small, sharp, interlocking teeth on each side of each jaw.
The Short-beaked Common Dolphin is a member of common dolphin genus, Delphinus within the dolphin family, Delphinidae. Until the mid-1990s, the different forms within Delphinus were not recognized as separate species, but were all considered members of the species D. delphis. Currently, there are two recognized species of Delphinus — the Short-beaked Common Dolphin and the Long-beaked Common Dolphin (D. capensis). The Short-beaked Common Dolphin is generally smaller than the Long-beaked Common Dolphin and has a shorter rostrum.
Short-beaked Common Dolphins can live in aggregations of hundreds or even thousands of dolphins. They sometimes associate with other dolphin species, such as pilot whales. They have also been observed bow riding on baleen whales, and they also bow ride on boats. It is a fast swimmer, and breaching behavior and aerial acrobatics are common with this species.
The Short-beaked Common Dolphin has a varied diet consisting of many species of fish and squid that live less than 200 metres (660 ft) deep.
The Short-beaked Common Dolphin has a gestation period of 10 to 11 months. The newborn calf has a length of between 70 and 100 centimetres (2.3 and 3.3 ft) and weights about 10 kilograms (22 lb). For the Black Sea population, weaning occurs at between 5 and 6 months, but occurs later (up to about 19 months) in other areas. Typical interbirth interval ranges from 1 year for the Black Sea population to 3 years for eastern Pacific Ocean populations. Age of sexual maturity also varies by location, but can range between 2 and 7 years for females and 3 and 12 years for males.
Maximum lifespan is 35 years, but has been estimated at 22 years for the Black Sea population.
1. ^ a b Mead, James G. and Robert L. Brownell, Jr (November 16, 2005). "Order Cetacea". in Wilson, D. E., and Reeder, D. M. eds. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 723–743. ISBN 0-801-88221-4. http://www.bucknell.edu/msw3/browse.asp?id=14300045.
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