White beaked dolphin

(Lagenorhynchus albirostris)

Family: Delphinidae

Species: Lagenorhynchus albirostris

Lenght: 2,5 to 3 meters.

Weight: 180 to 275 Kg.

Life expectancy: Unknown.

Description: White-beaked dolphins are toothed whales and therefore a member of the odontocete family. They are found throughout the North Atlantic in high latitudes, but are not well-studied and there is still substantial natural history information not known for this species. In our study area we tend to see white-beaked dolphins in the beginning of our season, though we see them less often overall than we see Atlantic white sided dolphins, which we see in early fall. White-beaked dolphins have a very robust body, single blowhole opening, prominent, falcate dorsal fin, and short beak (rostrum) that typically has white pigmentation on it. Large dark regions on the dorsal sides of these dolphins are interrupted by blazes of white and light grey. 

Diet: Squid is a more important diet item to these dolphins compared to the Atlantic white sided dolphins, but they also eat a variety of both schooling and bottom-dwelling fish (herring, capelin, cod, haddock and whiting), invertebrates, and benthic crustaceans.

Behaviour: White-beaked dolphins are a gregarious and social species that live and travel in groups of 2 to 30 individuals, occasionally up to several hundred individuals, often displaying aerial behaviors such as jumping, bow-riding and breaching. They are been observed alongside feeding humpback and fin whales and sometimes with other species of dolphins. Since these dolphins are toothed whales they can use echolocation to find prey in deep murky water by producing clicks thats bounce off fish and return to the dolphin to provide acoustic visualization.