The Fascinating World Of Dolphins

By: Joshua Plansden

Since dolphins swim in the water many people think that they must be fish. However, dolphins are in fact warm-blooded mammals that breathe air and give birth to baby dolphins rather than lay eggs. This fact alone makes dolphins unique creatures, but they also have many more characteristics that make them one of the most interesting animals on the planet.

If you happen to experience dolphins from close ranges, then you will be aware of their unique characteristics for which they are famous. Dolphins are cetaceans like the whales and are placed along with whales in the group called odontocetes, since they have teeth. However, some Whales do not have teeth for feeding and are placed under the group mysticetes.

Dolphins live in tropical and warm waters. Many people are unaware of the fact that rivers and freshwaters are also home to few species of dolphins. These dolphins are however endangered and exist in very few numbers.

In total there are approximately 57 different species of dolphins swimming in the waters of world today. The dolphin is a sleek looking creature that has a long beak- like nose. This characteristic nose is called a "rostrum". Many people make the mistake of confusing the dolphin and the porpoise as the same type of animal. This is far from true. One of major differences between the dolphin and the porpoise is the shape of their teeth. The teeth of the dolphin are shaped liked cones while the teeth of the porpoise are shaped much like spades, making them perfect for digging among rocks. Another big difference is that porpoises live in water that is colder than that which dolphins can tolerate.

The Orca or the killer whale is one of the most common species of dolphins. When people think of the most dominating and ferocious creature in the sea, the Orca or the Killer whale comes to everyone's mind. They are also the most fearless amongst all sea animals.

The female Dolphins are very caring mothers. To give birth to a young calf, the female dolphins have a very long gestation period. The female dolphins stay pregnant for 12 months to deliver one young baby. The baby calves on birth are approximately 30 inches long and weigh around 30 - 40 pounds. During the first two years of the life of the calf, the mother dolphin takes a lot of care and nurses the young one.

Unlike other species of animals where the mother gives birth and the young leave her side after a short period of time, the dolphin calf will stay with its mother for five to seven years. During this time the young dolphin will learn many skills from its mother, including how to feed and how to get along with other dolphins.

Dolphins live in groups known as "pods" and travel together. The females interact with the young, while the males keep more to themselves and don't participate in parenting.

The dolphin continues to be one of the most fascinating animals in the world. This has a large part to do with its intelligence and incredible curiosity. These animals love to interact with man whenever they can, chirping in their native dolphin tongue about events in the water that we'll never understand.

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About the author: Joshua Plansden is the your host at A Dolphins Fan, the #1 source on the internet when you are searching for the latest knowledge, accurate up to date advice and commentary to do with dolphins, For more articles on dolphins why not visit:
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