Watching dolphins in their wild watery world is an amazing spectacle. They glide with effortless grace and speed through the water and their acrobatics are show-stopping. They seem to possess a certain ‘joie de vivre’ that has captured the hearts and imagination of many.
The dolphin found most often along our coastline is the inshore Bottlenose dolphin, and we are fortunate enough to see them on many of our Marine Eco-Tours. They never fail to delight.
I wasn’t surprised to learn that the Bottlenose dolphin has the largest brain to body mass ratio of any mammal on earth, bigger even than ours. They are highly intelligent, sentient beings and sadly, this makes them a target for the captive trade industry.
Bottlenose dolphins can reach speeds of up to 30km per hour and surface often to take a breath. They make use of a whole range of sounds – such as squeaks, clicks and whistles – to navigate, communicate, hunt, and avoid predators.
Once during a trip we placed our hydrophone into the water within a feeding frenzy of Bottlenose dolphins. It was absolutely fascinating to hear the sound of their echolocation, the method they use whilst feeding where they can make up to 1000 clicking noises per second, which sounds very different to the sounds they use to merely communicate with one another.