Chilean Dolphin


Chilean or Black DolphinBlack Dolphin

Family: Delphinidae
Genus: Cephalorhynchus
Species: C. eutropia    (Gray, 1846)

Not only does the Chilean dolphin reside exclusively in a remote area off the coast of Chile, it is also a shy species and avoids ships, making even simple observation difficult. It has a stocky body, rounded dorsal fin and flippers, and is white ventrally, although in general its color pattern is not as dramatic as the others of its genus.

Physical Description: It closely resembles Commerson’s dolphin, except that it shows much darker gray/white patches along the throat, behind the flippers, and on the belly region.

Color: Dark dorsally overall, with a white throat and belly region. White spots behind the flippers. A light gray patch extends from the tip of the snout to the blowhole.

Fins and Flukes: The dorsal fin is falcate and dramatically rounded. The flippers are rounded at the leading edges and tips, while the flukes are well developed and pointed at the tips.

Length and Weight: This animal reaches at least 4 ft (1.2 m) and an estimated 119 lb (54 kg).

Teeth: There are 28 to 31 small conical teeth on each side of the upper and lower jaws.

Feeding: They are known to feed on cuttlefish and squid, and probably small fish as well.

Breathing and Diving: Little definitive information available.

Mating and Breeding: No information available.

Herding: Rare sightings suggest these animals swim alone or in groups of up to a dozen.

Distribution: Found only along the southern coast of Chile from Concepción to Isla Novarino and Tierra del Fuego.

Migration: No information available.

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