Tricks to recognize a common dolphin

Long-beaked common dolphin


Adult Length:

Long-beaked common dolphins in the subregion reach maximun lengths of 2.5 m in males and 2.2 m in females.


Common dolphins are relatively easy to distinguish from other small dolphins at sea from the distinctive criss-cross marking on the side.

20160318_6D_HB_IMG_0262 (SSA - Simon Elwen).jpg


Dark cape, in V-shape below dorsal fin, hourglass pattern on flank (yellow front-grey tailstock).

Dorsal fin:

Tall triangular to falcate dorsal fin

Pectoral fin

Dark, narrow and pointy


Long beak and slender head with flattened melon

Group size:


Usually in large groups, up to 100 individuals


Fast swimmers, often acrobatic. They seem to be compulsive bow-riders and in general highly vocal, producing clicks, whistles, squeaks and creaks.


Present year round, more common in late summer


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

About seasearchafrica

The Sea Search group is a collective of scientists and students with a strong academic background in the area of marine mammal science. Our primary focus is the production of peer-reviewed scientific research and student training. We also provide specialist consultancy services and work with industry and government to promote conservation through effective management.

One response to “Tricks to recognize a common dolphin”

  1. mukul chand says :

    beautiful post and pics


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: