New Species of Dolphin Identified

DolphinDetailed DNA studies and analysis of skulls in museums have determined that some dolphins in South-eastern Australia belong to an unrecognised species. They are a type of bottlenose dolphin and have been classified as Tursiops australis, which are genetically different from two other bottlenose species, Tursiops truncatus and Tursiops aduncus. Their common name is Burrunan dolphins, which comes from the Aboriginal for “large sea fish of the porpoise kind”.

There are approximately 150 dolphins which make up two resident populations in Port Phillip Bay and the Gippsland Lakes in Victoria state. Speaking of which, I once had a very good pinot noir from a winery in Port Phillip, so the dolphins obviously have good taste.

According to Kate Charlton-Robb of Monash University¬† “This is an incredibly fascinating discovery as there have only been three new dolphin species formally described and recognised since the late 1800s,”.

You can read more from the BBC’s website.

About Neil Hambleton

I am a British Sub-Aqua Club (BSAC) Advanced Diver and an Open Water Instructor. I have been diving since 1992, after joining South China Diving Club (SCDC), which is a Hong Kong-based branch of the BSAC. Having moved to New Zealand, I am now a member of BSAC New Zealand.
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