New breed of dolphins coming to shore to hunt food (video)

Ruth Doherty


Rare breed of dolphins seen coming to shore to feed
Rare breed of dolphins seen coming to shore to feed



A rare species of dolphin has been spotted coming ashore shore to hunt for food.

The pod of Australian humpback dolphins, only classed as a species a few months ago, was observed 'strand-feeding' - where they almost beach themselves - in the Fitzroy River estuary of Central Queensland.

A team from Australia's Southern Cross University witnessed the behaviour when they were tracking the pod in September.



According to the Metro, Daniele Cagnazzi, a member of the research team, told Business Insider Australia: "The humpback dolphins were observed swimming a few meters away from and parallel to the shoreline. This behaviour probably allows dolphins to concentrate fish against the mud bank before charging at them at high speed."

The Daily Mail reports that, until now, the rare 'strand-feeding' behaviour has been documented in only two species: the Orca in Argentina; and bottlenose dolphins in Georgia and South Carolina in the US, Sado Estuary in Portugal, and Shark Bay and Peron Peninsula in Western Australia.

Other feeding methods include herding, where a pod squeezes a school of fish into a small volume, known as a bait ball.

Individual members then take turns plowing through the ball, feeding on the stunned fish.

Coralling is a method where dolphins chase fish into shallow water to catch them more easily.[

Some species also whack fish with their flukes, stunning them and sometimes knocking them out of the water.

But 'beach-feeding' is the most unusual.



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