Spotted Dolphins -- Cetacean Info at Whale Songs

SCIENTIFIC NAME: Stenella frontalis (Atlantic Spotted Dolphin) -- From the Greek Slenos (narrow), referring to long, narrow beak.

COMMON NAME: Spotted Dolphin


* Stenella Frontalis (Atlantic Spotted Dolphin) Widely disributed in tropical and warm temperate waters circumglobally.
* Found in the South Atlantic to North Atlantic
* from 40° N to 40° S
* Indian Ocean - Schools as far South as 35° S
* Eastern Pacific from 25° N to 15° S near coast of Central and South America


* Spotted body usually decreases with distance from continental shores of North America
* Spots increase with age within population
* Robust head and body
* Long, slim beak
* Dark gray, purplish dorsal cape, extending from the top of the head to about halfway down the side of the animal, behind the flipper and sweeping up to the end behind the dorsal fin
* Ventral surface is light gray
* Tall, falcate fin
* White-tipped beak
* Size: 2.2 meters (both sexes)



* Stenella Frontalis (Atlantic Spotted Dolphin) Offshore and inshore; warm temperate, subtropical and tropical waters in both the North and South Atlantic.
* Offshore forms occur mainly in tropical waters north of the equator and in seasonal tropical waters south of the Galapagos Islands


* Varies with location
* At or near surface
* Includes squid or octopus, frigate makeral, flying fish, small eels, herring and other invertebrates


* May live as long as 45 years
* Calving dates in May and September
* Gestation period is between 11 and 12 months
* Males are sexually mature at 12 years and 1.49 m long and females at 9 years at 1.82 m long
* Evidence of mating year round


* Frequently school with other species such as spinner dolphins
* Groups may range in size from a few to several thousand in offshore regions
* Segregation by age, sex, and reproductive status has been observed
* Active at surface- hurl and jump into the air, forward flips, pitch poling tail lobbing and bow riding
* Vigorous swimmers

SPOTTED DOLPHIN SONGS: The following .au file is a sample the song of the Spotted Dolphin.

* Clicks [26k .au file]


* No abundance estimates, but known to be common in the western North Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico


* Victims of controversial tuna industry
* Primary target for purse seiners searching for yellow fin tans in the Eastern Pacific
* Thousands killed every year for the last 30 years
* Population is 1/2 the initial level
* Soloman Islands and Japanese fisheries have taken many
* Hunting and entanglement in fishing nets