Q:

How do dolphins give birth?

A:

Dolphins give birth to live calves while staying in relatively shallow waters. Normal delivery results in a calves being born tail (or fluke) first.

As marine mammals, dolphins gestate live young and give birth to live calves that are prepared to breathe and swim shortly after birth. Gestation periods vary for different dolphin species; bottlenose dolphins gestate their young for 12 months, while spinner dolphins give birth after 11 months. Typically, dolphins give birth to only one young at a time. According to the University of Utah, a healthy adult female bottlenose dolphin will have one calf every 2 to 4 years. Similarly, spinner dolphins have one calf every two years, according to Texas Tech University.

Many dolphin species engage in mating in summer months; because gestation periods are about a year long, most dolphins are born in the summertime as well. After birth, mothers nurse their young calves. The calves will then swim with their mothers' pods, which are dolphin social groups.

Though mothers may not nurse their young for the entire duration, most dolphin calves will stay with their mothers for 3 to 6 years. Newborn dolphins are relatively small, usually three or four feet long, and they measure 8 to 12 feet once fully grown.


Is this answer helpful?

Similar Questions

  • Q:

    What are dolphins?

    A:

    Dolphins are mammals found in the sea and are part of the toothed whale family. They are grey with backs that are darker than the rest of their bodies.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What part of the ocean do starfish live in?

    A:

    Starfish typically reside in shallow waters along rocky coasts, according to The Columbia Encyclopedia. The starfish is an echinoderm of the Asteroidae class. Around 2,000 species of starfish exist across the planet.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Where do squid live?

    A:

    Some squid species live in shallow waters near coastlines, but others live in deeper ocean waters. The California shoreline and Florida coast are popular spots. The lifespan of species that live in deeper waters is often longer because these spots offer more plentiful food and less hunting by humans.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is a stingray's habitat?

    A:

    National Geographic explains that stingrays live in warm bodies of water all around the world; they prefer shallow waters along the coastal regions. To blend in to their habitats, stingrays lay on the bottom of the ocean floor, covering themselves with sand. They use this camouflage technique to avoid predators, such as sharks or larger rays. They also remain on the ocean floor because their prey lives there.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore