Striped Dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba)
What do we know about the Striped Dolphins in the Strait of Gibraltar?
Striped Dolphins are still quite numerous in the Strait and we can observe them all year round. In the second half of the summer, from end of July on, we occasionally encounter particularly large groups of several hundred animals.
The name Striped Dolphin or Blue-white Dolphin refers to the characteristic blue stripe on the flanks. The animals of this species can easily be distinguished from the Common Dolphins, with which they often form mixed groups.
Striped Dolphins are very active and we observe them riding bow waves in front of container ships, hunting and jumping. Usually they keep some distance from the whale watching boats.
Throughout the season we can also observe young animals in the groups, although these are sometimes not so easy to spot as this dolphin species is generally small. You can also read our research report on the Striped Dolphin.
Facts worth knowing
- dark cape
- white belly
- blue stripe on the flanks
- crescent shaped dorsal fin
- slightly notched fluke
|Striped Dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba)|
|Suborder:||Odontoceti (toothed whales)|
|Size:||1.8–2.5 m, 156 kg|
|Size at birth:||1 m, 15 kg|
|Life expectancy:||50 years|
|Sexual maturity:||7–13 years|
|Reproduction:||every 3–4 years|
|Gestation period:||13 months|
|Nursing period:||18 months|
|Food:||fish, squid, crustaceans, 10–15 kg/day|
|Speed:||up to 65 km/h|
|Diving time/depth:||approx. 10 min/up to 200 m|