Hourglass Dolphin
Lagenorhynchus cruciger


Other Names: Wilson.s Dolphin, Southern White-sided Dolphin

Habitat: Offshore

Status: Locally common

Population: Unknown

Threats: Unknown

Group Size: 1-7, 1 exceptional case of about 100 reported together

Fin Position: Center

Newborns: Unknown length, Unknown weight

Adults: c.5 ¼-6 ft (1.6-1.8 m), 200-265 lbs. (90-120 kg)

Diet: Fish and squid or octopus

Teeth: 56 on both top and bottom rows


Description

Dorsal fin:

- tall, curved dorsal fin (variable)
- leading edge sometimes highly curved
- concave trailing edge (much straighter in some individuals)
- broad base

Flukes:

- concave trailing edges
- distinct notch in middle
- black upper sides and undersides

Flippers:

- strongly curved flippers
- long flippers black on both sides
- pointed tips

Head:

- black forehead
- short, thick black beak
- dark patch and white .spectacles. around each eye

Other characteristics:

- white patch on sides
- black upper side
- white patch on either side of tail stock
- conspicuous keel on tail stock, especially underside
- white underside


Behavior

- normally a boisterous swimmer and capable of speeds exceeding 12 knots
- known to ride bow waves and stern waves of fast boats and ships, swimming with long, low leaps
- from a distance, this undulating motion makes it look like swimming penguins
- will swim alongside slow vessels
- when swimming fast, may travel very close to the surface without actually leaving the water, creating a great deal of spray when it rises to breathe
- has been observed spinning around on longitudinal axis when riding waves
- may associated with other pelagic species, such as Fin Whales, Sei Whales, Southern Bottlenose Whales, Arnoux.s Beaked Whales, Killer Whales, Long-finned Pilot Whales, and Southern Rightwhale Dolphins


Distribution

- cold waters of the southern hemisphere, predominately between 45° S and 65° S
- distribution poorly known, though range appears to be fairly extensive
- mostly occurs in the South Atlantic and South Pacific, and in cool currents associated with the West-wind Drift
- occurs within 100 miles (160 km) of the ice edge in some southern parts of range; northern limits largely unknown, but probably below 45° S
- a single record as far north as Valparaíso, Chile, seems to be exceptional
- normally seen far out to sea; however, has been observed in fairly shallow water near the Antarctic Peninsula and off southern South America
- range probably shifts north and south with the seasons



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This page was created by:Candice Orca Mottet