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Striped Dolphin
Striped Dolphin
Stenella coeruleoalba

Striped Dolphin leaping
© Doug Perrine/Innerspace Visions

Description
    To 9' (2.7 m). Moderately robust; top of head and back dark gray to bluish gray, sides lighter gray, throat and belly white. Black stripes on lower half of each side, single or double stripe from eye to flipper, another from eye to anus, usually with short, ventral branch ending above and somewhat behind flipper. Beak black, long, sharply defined black patch around each eye connected to beak. Dark cape on back. Distinctive light blaze usually extends up and back from light side into cape toward dorsal fin. Dorsal fin dark, falcate.

Similar Species
    Common Dolphin (Delphinus delphis) has crisscross pattern on sides; darker back; distinct, black stripe from middle of lower jaw to flippers.
Habitat
    Warmer temperate and tropical waters off edge of continental shelf; warm fingers of water on northern areas.
Range
    In Atlantic from Halifax, Nova Scotia, to Lesser Antilles, including Gulf of Mexico. In Pacific from Bering Sea to NW. South America.
Discussion
    Other common names for the Striped Dolphin are Meyen's Dolphin, Blue-white Dolphin, Gray's Dolphin, Striped Porpoise, Streaker Porpoise, Euphrosyne Dolphin, and Whitebelly. These animals, which often occur in large herds of several hundred individuals, may ride bow waves and jump clear of the water. They feed at mid-depths on fishes, squids, and crustaceans. They often associate with schools of tunas in the eastern Pacific, and many Striped Dolphins are killed by accident when caught with the tunas in purse seines. Successful efforts are being made to reduce these losses.

Information taken from
eNature.com

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