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Bottlenose Dolphin

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Oct. 15, 2019

The highly intelligent Bottlenose Dolphin is one the most popular species of cetaceans and can be found in the coast of Algarve, as they like tropical waters and warm oceans. These dolphins have developed an amazing system that allows them to “see” underwater with sound, the echolocation. It is based on reflections of sound and can be used to trace the location of objects. The characteristic squeaks and whistles that dolphins produce are used to communicate.

In terms of swimming the bottlenose dolphin can reach speeds up to 18 miles per hour, swim up to 100 miles and surface to breathe 2 or 3 times per minute. Dolphins also love to have fun. It’s common to see them close to shore, that’s where they like to hang around. It’s possible to watch them breaching (shooting out of the water) and lobtailing (slapping the tail against the water). During the boat tours dolphins surf in the waves created by boats, that behaviour is known as bow riding.

These dolphins are known to be very social, travelling in groups up to 15 but they don’t remain together forever, breaking away and finding new groups occasionally. Another interesting fact is that female dolphins and their calves stay with each other from 3 to 6 years. The bottlenose dolphin can live up to 50 years. The issues that threaten their survival are the entanglement in fishing nets, impacts from climate change and habitat degradation.