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About Spotted Dolphin
Spotted Dolphins (Stenella attenuate) vary in size and color according to their geographic location. There are two species under this; they are the pantropical spotted dolphin, Stella attenuate and the Atlantic species, Stenella frontalis. Their body is covered with spots and these spots get darker as they grow older. They have excellent vision and they can swim up to 30 miles/hr, and can jump up to 30 feet. They are mammals, even though they live in water. They are very social and playful in nature. They have a life span of around 40 years. They make whistling sound to communicate with each other and can hold their breath for (3-5) minutes.
Spotted Dolphin Habitat and Behavior
These spotted dolphins have (35 to 48) small conical teeth on the sides of upper jaw and (34-47) conical teeth on the sides of lower jaw. Their color varies according to the age. They have a long and curved dorsal fin and their flippers are small and pointed. They grow up to a length of 7 feet and weigh up to 100 kg on average. They feed on the various types of fish and squid, which are found on the surface of water. They are founding the Atlantic Ocean, the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. They are found in tropical warm waters. They are found to be very social in their behavior. The pantropical spotted dolphin are often seen with the group of other dolphin species.
Reproduction and Breeding
These spotted dolphins acquire maturity at the age of (6 to 8) years or when it reaches at the length of 6.5 feet. The gestation period is eleven and half months and the calves are nurtured for around eleven months.
Spotted Dolphin Colors
These dolphins have a characteristic that their color varies on the basis of age, location and the individual. Thus, the color variations are as follows:
- The calves of these species are dark grey and have a white belly. They do not have spots on their body.
- They have dark color on top and light on their belly.
- In the adolescent phase, dark spots begin to appear on their lower part of their body, while light spots appear on the upper portion of their body.
- Finally, they get pink shading on the forward part of their belly.
- It has a black beak and the tip of the beak is white.
Spotted Dolphin Facts
- They have finger bones inside their pectoral fins
- They reach sexual maturity at the age between (12 to 14) years
- Their calves are around 30 inches long
Endangered Spotted Dolphin
The three families of the dolphin are in the IUCN red list of endangered species. These are because a huge number of these species have been killed due to the irresponsible behavior of the human being. Around 4,000,000 dolphins died in the process of tuna fishery from 1959 to 1978. Apart from these a lot of dolphins are killed for their oil, skin and flesh.