As humans, we are creatures of habit and spend a lot of our time working and not as much time as we should on relaxing. And when we do relax, we tend to do the things we are used to doing, like watching TV or taking a walk. However, there are many more things out there that should be considered.
Boat tours in Charleston also include dolphin watching! It’s so cool to see these creatures up close in person. Sometimes they will swim right up to the boat and you can hear them making noises.
So what’s so cool about dolphins?
Dolphins are extremely intelligent. To fully appreciate the intelligence of dolphins, it’s worth talking about some really cool facts. That’s what this blog post will discuss. Let’s get started.
Dolphins Name Their Young
Yes, you read that right. Dolphins do in fact name their young. It’s official! Humans are no longer the only species to give names to their young.
Mother dolphins sing their own name to their unborn young in the womb so that they know who their mamma is. And after birth, they repeatedly send out a signature whistle to their young until they understand that they have been given a name. Signature whistles are used by dolphins to identify one another.
Dolphins Are Extremely Fast
When we see dolphins, they are typically swimming along at a leisurely pace. Bottlenose dolphins usually move at around 2 mph. To our surprise, they can go up to 15x that speed and reach 30 mph for brief periods of time. This helps them with hunting. Luckily, Charleston boat tours can keep up with their fast speed.
Dolphins Are Mammals
You may have heard this one before, but what does it really mean? There are five characteristics that mammals have. This includes having hair or fur, being warm-blooded, giving birth to live young, fed milk from mammary glands, and have large and complex brains.
The characteristic that is sticking out from that list is having hair or fur. You probably don’t think that dolphins have any hair at all. In fact, baby dolphins are born with a tiny little mustache above their lip which later falls off. The mustache helps newborn dolphins identify and feel their mother during the first few days of nursing until they get the hang of it. It falls off about a week later.
Dolphins Have a Unique Way of Sleeping
Since dolphins are mammals, they breathe air and can’t extract oxygen from water. Therefore, they have to rise above the water’s surface every now and then in order to breathe. So how can dolphins possibly sleep with this inconvenience? Nature has provided a solution.
Dolphins shut off half of their brain at a time, along with one eye. So one side will still be attentive, swimming slowly, getting air, and watching for predators. Every two hours, the brain switch alternates.
This is just amazing. It’s also funny because it’s possible that they wake up and think, “How did I get here?”, considering they are swimming while being asleep.
Dolphins Eat Fish Whole
Yes, that’s right. They can’t be bothered to chew and simply open their mouth and swallow the fish. They swallow a fish’s head first so that their spines don’t get caught in their throat.
Most dolphins eat fish, squid, and crustaceans. Larger prey is shaken to bits or rubbed against objects in order to break them into smaller pieces and able to be consumed. Adult dolphins will eat roughly 5% of their own body weight in a single day!
Dolphins Have a Unique Way of Communicating
This is one of the most fascinating things about dolphins. Dolphin communication has three main methods. This includes echolocation, social communication, and whistles. They also will slap the water’s surface with their body or tail (known as breaching). They make buzzes, clicks, whistles, and even more noises that can be heard from miles away. Dolphins will learn each other’s signature whistles and are then able to talk to one another directly.
Seeing dolphins up close is exhilarating! It’s so cool to know how smart and unique they are as creatures and then have them right in front of you. They are like people but occupy the ocean. If you are looking for something fun to do, consider boat rides in Charleston, SC. Learn more here.