Bottlenose Dolphins are one of the most recognizable species of dolphins in the world. They are highly intelligent and are not only popular with aquarium shows, but have been used by the military to locate sea mines or enemy divers.
Bottlenose Dolphins live in warm and temperate seas all over the world. They live in groups called pods, which typically consist of 10-30 members. Swimming in pods allows populations of Bottlenose Dolphins to better defend themselves against predators.
Bottlenose Dolphins echolocation to search for food. Echolocation is the process by which animals emit sounds into the environment and determine the location of their prey by listening to the echoes of their calls. Echolocation is also used for navigation. The diet of Bottlenose Dolphins primarily consists of small fish, crustaceans, and squid.
Some larger shark species such as the Tiger Shark, Great White Shark and Bull Shark prey on Bottlenose Dolphins, especially calves. Killer Whales have also been observed preying on dolphins, but this is uncommon.
Bottlenose Dolphins often travel with Tuna and thus get caught in Tuna nets, which has led to “dolphin safe” fishing methods. Bottlenose Dolphins are also killed for their meat or to eliminate competition for fish.
As a whole, Bottlenose Dolphins are not endangered – they are a highly adaptable species and abundant all over the world. However, there are specific populations that are threatened due to environmental changes such as water pollution and decrease in food availability.