Short-beaked Common Dolphin
Short-beaked common dolphins are 6 to 8 ft long (1.8 to 2.4 m) and adults averagely weigh 170 lb (78 kg).
Short-beaked common dolphins live approximately 35-40 years.
They eat schooling fish (herring, mackerel, anchovies, sardines, etc) and squid. They’re cooperative feeders and may drive their fish prey into a “bait-ball”.
Widely distributed, they can be found in all oceans but prefer tropical and temperate waters.
Threats to Short-beaked Common Dolphins
Habitat shifting and alteration, fishing & harvesting of aquatic resources, incidental mortality in fishing gear (or bycatch), anthropogenic (human-created) noise
Current Population Trend Unknown
The IUCN Red List tracks the conservation status of organisms around the world. Visit the Red List to learn more about the conservation status of short-beaked common dolphins.
OCS Research Insights
Short-beaked Common Dolphin Facts
• They are among the most gregarious (sociable) of all cetaceans (whales, dolphins and porpoises); they bow ride boats and you can hear them whistling.
• Are called “common” dolphins as they have been sighted in every ocean and most seas, except polar regions. However, they have been declining dramatically in some areas (for example, in the Mediterranean Sea).
• Previously considered to be one species, in 1994 the common dolphin was separated into short-beaked and long-beaked varieties. However, more recent studies suggest that the initial classification was correct, and so the common dolphin is in fact one species, with high variation through its range.
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whale and dolphin species drawings © Massimo Demma / ICRAM / Muzzio