Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Irawaddy Dolphin

Pink dolphin tours in Koh Samui

Scientific name: Orcaella Brevirostris

Fact:  The Irrawaddy Dolphin is a slow moving species and can reach a speed of 25 miles per hour. They aren't well known for bouncing around and doing general dolphin things however they have been seen bounding out of the water from time to time 

Length: 5.9-9 Feet

Weight: 198-440 Pounds

Lifespan: 5-32 years

Natural habitat: Lakes, Rivers, Estuaries and Coasts (specifically the Mekong River)

Sexual maturity: 4-9 years of age

Gestation: 9-14 months and produces one offspring about every 2-3 years 

Litter: 1

Predators: HUMANS

Threats: Water poisoning, collisions with boats and getting caught up in nets. Also the potential building of the Don Sahong Dam (see the post I wrote about this here: )

Diet: Fish, Eggs, Mollusks, Aquatic crustaceans 

Interesting facts: The Irrawaddy Dolphin is like other dolphins a warm blooded mammal meaning they give birth, make milk and breath air. They are protected animals and the hunting of them will result in fines and jail time. The longest time recorded for a Irrawaddy dolphin to hold it breath is 6 full minutes. Also like other dolphins they do use echolocation to navigate their way around and locate food. They have a rounded head that looks as if they were related to the beluga whale although they are much closer related to the orca whale. They feed together in groups of less then 6 but can be as many as 15 dolphins. They are well known to spit water in order to herd up fish. In some places fisherman will convince the dolphin to heard up fish in to their nets and that dolphin also benefit as they catch any of the confused or dazed fish that don't make it into the net. 

Endangerment statute: Critically endangered  (highest endangerment status)

Want to help: Sign the petition to keep from the building of the dam that will lead the their extinction

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