Pod of playful Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins
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April 7, 2022

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Francis Canto Jr
Assistant Manager at Canto's Demolition Service, Head Photographer at BelPix Photography and IT Technician at Maya Island Air Belize
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Pod of playful Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins

While observing a Brown Booby I finally got to photograph a pod of Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins. These guys were busy playing and foraging in the shallows off of Fort George, it even appeared that some calves were in the pod.

Dolphins, are regarded to be among the brightest creatures on the earth, rivaling the big apes, that is chimps and gorillas, for first place.

The most common dolphin to encounter in Belize are the bottlenose dolphins. Their distinctive features are their short thick beak and curved mouth that gives the appearance that they are always smiling. They are usually grey in color and measure anywhere from 2 to 4 meters in length. Bottlenose dolphins are very are social creatures and travel in groups called “pods”. To communicate they often whistle to each other, with each dolphin having their own signature whistle.

Bottlenose dolphins have a lifespan of 40 to 60 years and female bottlenose dolphins give birth to a calf after a 12-month gestation period every 3 to 6 years. They consume 13-15 pounds of food every day and eat anything from fish to squid and shrimp.

Dolphins are social mammals that interact with one another, swim together, protect each other, and hunt for food as a team. They are intelligent animals and have characteristics displayed by humans including the ability to teach, learn, cooperate, scheme, and grieve. There are several common species in Belize:

Atlantic bottlenose dolphin
Atlantic spotted dolphin
Rough tooth dolphin
Spinner dolphin

In Belize Atlantic bottlenose dolphins are found through the inshore coastal lagoon and open ocean. Passengers on boats and scuba divers always marvel when dolphins are encountered at sea.

Photographs by Francis Canto Jr

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