Dolphins reproduce every one to three years, with the gestation period lasting approximately 12 months. Calves are born fully formed and are able to swim alongside their mothers immediately. They leave their mothers between the ages of 3 to 8, staying until they learn how to feed, forage and socialize. Dolphins reach reproductive age between the ages of 5 to 10 and have an average life expectancy of 40 years.Continue Reading
Dolphins have defined home ranges where they rest and feed and spend the majority of the day looking for food. However, they can swim hundreds of miles in a day, traveling back and forth, hunting prey or diving into the depths. They are extremely social creatures, hunting and living in large pods with rigid hierarchies. Large pods are mixed, but dolphins also form three different types of smaller pods: a nuclear pod, with a single male and female; a nursery group, with several females and young; and a bachelor pod, with males.
However, in captivity, dolphins have much shorter life spans, dropping to a half or third of their life span in the wild. Dolphins born into captivity often are unable to form the kind of social relationships they need to thrive, depressing them and causing health problems.Learn more about Marine Mammals
Narwhals typically have only one calf per gestational period, and typical gestational periods last around 16 months, according to Defenders of Wildlife. Calves nurse for at least a year and stay with their mothers for up to 20 months.Full Answer >
Sharks appear to have evolved from fish between 400 and 450 million years ago, during the Early Devonian period. The earliest known sharks were fairly small and measured just 12 to 16 inches long. They appear to have lived near or on what is now Antarctica.Full Answer >
As mammals, baby dolphins survive on milk for the first few years of life, although they may learn to catch fish at only a few months of age. Over time, dolphins depend less on milk and more on fish and squid.Full Answer >
Yes, some people do eat dolphin. According to the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, dolphin meat is sold in Japan. However, it is often mislabeled as whale meat, and it is "almost always contaminated" with environmentally dangerous pollutants.Full Answer >