Facts About Dolphins
Nine facts about dolphins that you probably didn’t know already:
1) An average sized dolphin, weighing 260 lbs, will eat at least 33 lbs of fish each day. This is the equivalent of 12% of their body weight. Astonishingly, this is the diet of an adult dolphin and they will not gain any weight by eating this quantity of fish each day. If an adult human were to eat a similar amount relative to their size it would equate to 15-22 lbs of steak every day.
2) Although dolphins only have a calf every 2 – 3 years, they spend a lot of time having sex for pleasure. They are one of the only species in the animal kingdom to have sex for reasons other than procreation.
3) Dolphins navigate by using the magnetic field of the earth to orientate themselves. It shouldn’t therefore be possible for a dolphin to beach itself, but it is thought that the places in which this happens have an unusual or irregular magnetic field which confuses the dolphins’ senses.
4) Dolphins do not breathe instinctively and would die if they were to be knocked unconscious either by a strong blow or a general anesthetic. They have to sleep right near the surface of the water so that their blowholes remain exposed all of the time.
5) When dolphins breathe out of their blowholes, they can exhale the air at speeds faster than 100mph.
6) Dolphins don’t have any jaw muscles. Although they have teeth, they cannot chew as they don’t have the muscles necessary to move the jaw up and down. Instead, they use their teeth to grasp their food, to keep it still before they swallow it whole.
7) Despite living underwater, it is incredibly easy for dolphins to drown. If just a tablespoon of water were to enter a dolphin’s lung, then that could be enough to kill them. Most land mammals would be affected by water in the same way: it would take just 2 tablespoons of water in the lungs to drown a human.
8) Dolphins cannot smell, but they can distinguish between sweet, bitter, sour and salty tastes.
9) Dolphins use their own inner sonar (echo-location) to navigate and work out where they are in relation to other objects and animals in the sea. This echo- location is much more efficient than a bat’s and is massively superior to any sonar system made by humans.
Facts About Dolphins