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STRIPED DOLPHIN

Stenella coeruleoalba
PHOTO: Scott Hill. National Marine Mammal Laboratory (subdivision of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)

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Striped Dolphin
The Striped Dolphin is found in temperate and tropical waters of all the world's oceans.

They are some of the most abundant and widespread dolphins in the world.

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Anatomy
The markings and coloration of this species may vary by individual and geographical location. They have a distinctive pattern of blue and white stripes along the body. The underside is blue, white or pink. The sides are darker than the belly.

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Anatomy
Stenella coeruleoalba ranges in body length from 6 to 9 feet.

These dolphins can reach weigh up to 350 lbs for males and 330 lb for females.

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Habitat
This cetaceans inhabits temperate and tropical pelagic waters.

They avoid sea surface temperatures of less than 20 degrees C.

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Habitat
The Striped Dolphin has been observed in
New Zealand The Mediterranean Sea Eastern and western Pacic Ocean Atlantic Ocean Northern Europe South Africa Indian Ocean Caribbean Sea Northern Gulf of Mexico.

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Behavior
Striped dolphins are usually found in groups between 25 and 100 individuals, but have been occasionally seen in large groups of up to 1000 individuals.

Communication between striped dolphins is by clicks and whistles.

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Behavior
They are very active, performing maneuvers above the surface of the water, chin slaps and a unique behavior called "roto-tailing" in which "they make high arcing jumps.

They rarely associate with other species of whales, dolphins, and seabirds.

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Feeding
Spinner Dolphin seems to have an opportunistic feeding habit.

The diet varies with geographical location.

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Feeding
Spinner Dolphin seems to have an opportunistic feeding habit.

The diet varies with geographical location.

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Reproduction
They are polygamous.

Males reach sexual maturity between 7 and 15 years and females between 5 and 13 years.

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Reproduction
Gestation lasts approximately one year and there is a three or four year gap between calving.

The estimated lifespan of these dolphins is up to 58 years.

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Threats
The poor environmental conditions and their habitat degradation are threats for dolphins.

This species is protected under the Marine Mammal Protection since 1972.

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Threats
Populations around the world are in serious decline due to hunting and disease.

Fishermen kill dolphins caught in their nets.

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PHOTO COPYRIGHT: Scott Hill. National Marine Mammal Laboratory (subdivision of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)