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La Plata Dolphin (Pontoporia blainvillei) aka Franciscana

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PHYLUM: Chordata
CLASS: Mammalia
ORDER: Cetacea
FAMILY: Pontoporiidae
GENUS: Pontoporia
SPECIES: blainvillei

TOOTHED or TOOTHLESS (BALEEN): baleen

FRESHWATER, SALTERWATER or BRACKISH: Saltwater

HABITAT: East coast of South America

LENGTH (maximum): 5-6Ft

WEIGHT (maximum): 95-115 lbs

RELATIVE SPECIES: Tucuxi

OTHER NAMES: La Plata Dolphin, Franciscana

NEIGHBORING SPECIES: Burmeister’s Porpoise and Tucuxi

PREDATORS: Humans, sharks

This species is classified as VULNERABLE according to the IUCN's Red List.
This species is classified as VULNERABLE according to the IUCN’s Red List.

THREATS: Entanglement in fishing gear, pollution, habitat degradation

DIET: 24 species of fish. Usually small bottom dwellers such as croakers and weakfish.

MANNER OF FEEDING: Bottom foraging

BEHAVIOR: Travel in groups of about 15 of related individuals. No aerial displays. Inconspicuous at the surface

REPRODUCTION: Sexually mature at 4 or 5 years. Gestation is 10-11 months. Calving lasts for 9 months but the calves start to eat solid food at 3 months.

LIFE SPAN: 15-20 Years

COOL/GROSS/WEIRD:

  • They have the longest beak of any cetacean but are the smallest dolphin.
  • Can live in the ocean and rivers.

SOURCES:

  • Knopf, Alfred A. Guide to Marine Mammals of the World.Random House. 2002
  • http://www.cms.int/reports/small_cetaceans/data/P_blainvillei/p_blainvillei.htm
  • http://www.iucnredlist.org/apps/redlist/details/17978/0

 

-TSF-

 
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