As the namesake of Dolphin Blue, here are a few fun facts about dolphins:
- They can jump up to 30 ft.
- They can have between 80 – 250 teeth
- Dolphins can consume up to 30 lbs of fish per day
- They have the ability to hear 10 times better than humans
- Dolphins live in social groups from five to several hundred
- Their pregnancies can last from 9-17 months depending on species
- They can live up to 60 years
- Dolphins communicate using clicks, whistles, and other vocalizations
To get an idea of how all of these skills work together in tandem, take a look at southern Africa’s sardine run that occurs every year between May and July. Each summer hoards of sardines swim north along the African coast where dolphins, sharks, and other wildlife wait to feed on them. Earth-Touch created this infographic to visually illustrate how dolphins hunt during this unusual phenomenon, employing all of their many talents with great efficiency.
With all of these offensive capabilities, Dolphins are also able to successfully defend and kill attacking sharks. For instance, killer whales are the largest member of the dolphin family and routinely defend their pods from sharks, with sometimes only one whale versus several sharks. However, dolphins use their skills for more than their own gain; they seem to have a remarkable capability for altruism. There are several widely publicized stories of dolphins taking heroic action to save humans and even dogs.
But there’s more! It is theorized that dolphins have very high intelligence with their brain mass to body ratio rivaling that of humans. For instance, dolphins, elephants, and apes are the only animals tested that can recognize a reflection in a mirror by demonstrating preening behaviors. What divas!
It is important for us to keep the earth and the oceans clean to promote such fascinating aquatic wildlife. Check out our products for new ways to stay eco-friendly.
Dr. Jeremiah Clifford holds the jaws of a large great white shark while standing in the reconstructed jaws of a megalodon.
Last week, you may have tuned in to Discovery Channel’s annual Shark Week which kicked off with a two-hour documentary titled, “Megalodon: The Monster Shark Lives”. The megalodon, a prehistoric shark from the Miocene era, could grow more than 50 feet long and dwarf even the largest great white shark swimming in today’s ocean. Unfortunately, Discovery Channel’s megalodon documentary was more of a mockumentary in the sense that its scientist were really actors and the 67 foot long megalodon they were chasing (nicknamed Submarine) was not really terrorizing folks off the coast of South Africa because megalodons haven’t existed for millions of years.
This year’s Shark Week has sparked a bit of controversy with its Reality TV feel. So if you’ve been wanting more bite for your buck, keep reading to learn some little known facts about sharks.
- Sharks don’t hunt humans. Sharks are highly-specialized predators whose feeding strategies evolved long before humans entered the water. With over 350 shark species around today, fewer than 10 are considered dangerous to humans.
- Sharks can detect electrical fields. Special organs in their snouts enable them to pick up electrical pulses emitted from the muscle movements or beating hearts of potential prey.
- Female sharks can impregnate themselves. Through a form of asexual reproduction called parthenogenesis, shark embryos can grow and develop without fertilization.
- Sharks rarely get sick. Shark tissues have anticoagulant and antibacterial properties which scientists are studying in the hopes of discovering treatments for various medical conditions, including cystic fibrosis and forms of cancer.
- Humans are a shark’s most dangerous predator. Scientists have estimated that for every 1 human killed by a shark, there are 25 million sharks killed by humans.
An alarming number of sharks are killed every hour due to the gruesome act of shark finning and the harmful effects of bycatching in fishing equipment. The shark is a vital ocean predator that plays a huge part in balancing our delicate marine ecosystem. Learn how you can stop shark finning and get involved in shark conservation efforts.