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Bottlenose Dolphin - Tursiops truncatus
Photo by Howard Hall

One of the most recognized species, the bottlenose dolphin grows to an average length of 6-13 feet and weighs between 350-450 pounds. It has medium gray coloration on its back, and lighter gray to white on its underside. It has a well defined rostrum, or "beak." The bottlenose dolphin has a complex repertoire of vocalizations for communicating. It is a very social and acrobatic species, and may be seen jumping and leaping during play or mating.

Bottlenose Dolphin
(Tursiops truncatus)

Temperate and tropical waters worldwide

Warm, shallow, coastal waters

Fish, squid, and shrimp


The status of this species is representative of the populations within the waters of this Sanctuary only, not global populations.

Quick Fact
The bottlenose dolphin has been the subject of extensive research including, intellegence and communication abilities.

Learn More
- University of Michigan Museum of Zoology
- Georgia Museum of Natural History
- Museum of Texas Tech University