White-beaked dolphin

Antarctic Peninsula

Name: White-beaked Dolphin, Squidhound (Lagenorhynchus albirostris)

Length: 2 to 3 metres.

Weight: 180 to 350 kg.

Location: The North Atlantic Ocean.

Conservation status: Least Concern.

Diet: Fish, crustaceans, cephalopods.

Appearance: Short, white beak. Curved dorsal fin. The body is dark grey or black with white patches. White or light-coloured bands down the flanks.

How do White-beaked Dolphins feed?

When hunting surface fish the dolphins may work together to herd the prey fish into smaller areas, making it easier to scoop them up. When foraging alone they will head to the bottom of the water to snack on bottom-dwellers, usually no deeper than 700 metres.

Are White-beaked Dolphins social?

White-beaked Dolphins are very social not only with other dolphins but with Killer, Humpback, Minke, and Fin Whales with whom they will sometimes group feed.


They will generally live and travel with groups that number less than 30, but they can in fact amalgamate groups into super-groups that number up to 1,500.


They are also playful and curious when it comes to humans and will approach and play with boats.

How fast do White-beaked Dolphins swim?

White-beaked Dolphins can reach speeds of 45 km per hour.

What are White-beaked Dolphin birthing rituals like?

White-beaked Dolphins mature sexually at around 7 years of age. Breeding season takes place throughout the summer months (May through September) and since the gestation period is 11 months to a year, mating will occur soon after the birth.


The calves are around 1 metre long and weigh around 40 kg.

How long do White-beaked Dolphins live?

The life expectancy of White-beaked Dolphins is unknown. Dolphins in general live about 40 years in the wild.

How many White-beaked Dolphins are there today?

The world population of White-beaked Dolphins is unknown but is estimated to be at the very least over 100,000.

Do White-beaked Dolphins have any natural predators?

The only natural predators that prey upon White-beaked Dolphins are Killer Whales and larger forms of sharks.

7 Wonderful White-beaked Dolphin Facts

1. The genus name Lagenorhynchus comes from the Latin words lagenos which means “bottle” and rhynchos which means “beak.”

2. Its specific scientific name albirostris means “white beak.”

3. White-beaked Dolphins are the largest examples of the Lagenorhynchus genus.

4. White-beaked Dolphins have been spotted harassing whales to make them swim faster in order to create a wake for the Dolphins to swim in.

5. Each dolphin has a slightly different tonal range to its clicks and whistles allowing other dolphins in the group to understand which one is communicating at the time.

6. Those clicks and whistles are able to communicate a wide range of ideas – that a dolphin wants to mate, that there is danger, that it has found food, and so on.

7. White-beaked Dolphin pods are sometimes segregated by sex. All-male pods are referred to as an “alliance” while an all-female pod is a “party.”   

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