1. In India, it’s against the law to capture dolphins for entertainment purposes as they’re highly intelligent and considered ‘non-human persons’ whose rights to life and liberty must be respected.
2. Dolphins are extremely intelligent animals. Bottlenose dolphins are one of the few species – besides humans and apes – that can recognize their own reflection in the mirror.
3. Dolphins use echolocation, like bats. They make sounds that bounce off distant objects and create an echo. Listening for that echo reveals to them precisely where everything is.
4. There are 36 dolphin species, found in every ocean.
Most dolphins are marine and live in the ocean or brackish waters along coastlines.
5. Dolphins are marine mammals. They must surface to breathe air and give birth to live young.
6. A dolphin pregnancy last between nine and 16 months.
7. Dolphins have been known to protect humans when they’re in trouble.
A California surfer who once came face to face with a shark was surrounded by dolphins who escorted him safely to shore.
8. Dolphins are part of the family of whales that also includes orcas and pilot whales.
9. The largest dolphin, the orca, can grow to be over 30 feet long.
10. When sleeping, half of a dolphin’s brain goes to sleep while the other half stays awake.
This allows the dolphin to continue breathing and keep an eye out for potential predators.
11. Some species of dolphins can consume up to 30 pounds of fish per day.
12. Dolphins also have two stomachs: One for storage and one for digestion.
13. Their main diet consists mostly of fish and squid, which they track using echolocation.
14. Bottlenose dolphins can make up to 1,000 clicking noises per second.
These sounds travel underwater until they encounter objects, then bounce back to their dolphin senders, revealing the location, size, and shape of their target.
15. Dolphins are very social animals, generally living in pods of two to 40 dolphins.
16. Each dolphin’s dorsal fin is unique.
No two are alike, just like snowflakes or fingerprints.
17. The social mammals also communicate by squeaking, whistling and clicking.
18. They can also hold their breath for a total of between 8 to 10 minutes.
19. Dolphins must tell themselves when to breathe. It’s not an automatic response like it is for humans.
20. A dolphin mother will nurse her calf until it is 2-3 years old.
21. Just like humans, dolphin calves learn different behavioral traits from their mother through imitation.
22. Dolphins also have a distinct “personality”.
Some are introverted while others are more extroverted and socially playful.