What’s black, white, and fishy all over? The Short-Beaked Common Dolphin species, that’s who. The Short-Beaked Common Dolphins’ scientific name is
. Dolphins live in temperate and warm waters. They can reach six and a half to eight and a half feet in length and typically weigh 155 to 250 pounds.
Despite their hefty size, Common Dolphins are very fast swimmers. Highly active in the water, they often are seen playing in groups and riding the waves from large boats.
The Common Dolphin is found in pods of hundreds or even thousands. These aquatic creatures also travel with other dolphin species, whales, and even schools of tuna. Dolphins like to eat fish and mollusks, such as squid, and they hunt by gathering fish into small groups. They also prey on the fish that escape from the nets of fishing boats. This can be dangerous, however, because the dolphins who do this could get caught in the nets and drown.
The Short-Beaked species begins to mate at four years of age. Their breeding season changes depending on the temperature of the water they reside in. For example, in the warm waters off the coast of southern California, dolphin breeding and births happen in the fall. The Common Dolphin’s pregnancy lasts for about one year.
Short-beaked Common Dolphins are large, beautiful creatures. If you’re ever visiting an American coast, you might even spot one!
The encyclopedia of North American Animals