Who is it?
The bottlenose dolphin is a species of mammal that belongs to the order of cetaceans, specifically to the group of odontocetes (cetaceans with teeth). Their ancestors evolved from a land mammal to an animal fully adapted to aquatic life. They inhabit all seas and oceans, as they are a cosmopolitan species.
Its main characteristics include its soft and smooth skin, as well as the absence of hair. Although they are marine animals, they need to come to the surface to breathe, since they have lungs like us. They breathe through the blowhole, a hole at the top of the head. Through the blowhole they also make sounds that serve to communicate or for their echolocation system.
To improve the perception of the environment where they live, they have developed the echolocation system, a kind of biological sonar similar to that used by certain boats that allows them to control their surroundings in total darkness. Dolphins emit sounds through a specialized organ called melon, which when it collides with an object, bounces and allows the dolphin to make an image of the environment around it.
What are its habits?
Dolphins are social animals, they usually travel in groups that vary in number depending on the species. The bottlenose dolphin, for example, creates groups ranging from 10 to 25 specimens (depending on whether they walk along the coast or on the high seas). They communicate with each other through a large number of sounds, they are even known to have names (signature sounds). Body movements and jumps also help them communicate.
Regarding reproduction, gestation lasts about a year, they give birth to their young and usually have a single calf per birth. The lactation period can extend up to two years.
Piscivorous, it feeds on prawns, crabs, squid, octopus and a great variety of fish. They have between 84 and 100 teeth, which they use to capture their prey, but they do not chew the fish as they swallow it whole.
Did you know…
Dolphins do not sleep, they have a one-hemispheric dream. This means that they are conscious all the time, sleeping first one side of the brain and then the other.