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30 Interesting Dolphin Facts – Part II

They are funny, they are one of the fastest swimmers in oceans, they enjoy casual sex… well, dolphins are astonishing creatures and extremely funny and friendly. We already presented a list of 30 facts about dolphins and here is another one! Be prepared to be amazed by their super powers!

Interesting Dolphin Facts: 1-10

1. Dolphins have a layer of special reflectors in their eyes known as tapetem lucidem which allows them to see exceptionally well in low light conditions.

2. Dolphins have the incredible ability of surviving without sleep for months. They can do this because they are capable of alternately shutting down half of their brain at a time while all the functions are taken care of by the other half.

3. Coming to the skin of a dolphin, the epidermis is way thicker than any land animal. In fact, it is 10 to 20 times thicker.

4. The epidermis of a dolphin grows 9 times faster than that of humans and the entire skin layer of a dolphin gets replaced every two hours. This is the reason why dolphins have very hydrodynamic, silky and smooth skin.

5. Yet another fascinating feature of their skin is that they have microscopic ripples. These ripples prevent any kind of parasite from grabbing on to the skin. These ripples are also responsible for helping dolphins to swim very fast through the water.

6. Dolphins are known for releasing a very special kind of gel which is known for resisting mucus that barnacles. This special gel is also known to have enzymes that destroy parasites by attacking them.

7. Dolphins are known for being capable of holding their breath for 12 minutes and dive to a depth of 1800 feet. They can do this because their almost human-sized lungs are far more efficient than human lungs.

8. With every single breath, dolphins are capable of exchanging more than 80% of the lung air as compared to only 17% in case of humans. Coupled with this feature, the higher count of red blood cells and higher hemoglobin concentrations in dolphins allow them to store more oxygen in muscles and blood.

9. Dolphins are also equipped with the ability to control their blood circulation. They usually restrict blood flow to extremities of their bodies and divert the blood towards brain and heart during deep dives. This explains why they are capable of holding their breaths for longer time.

10. Dolphins are equally sensitive to pain as humans but they also have the ability to completely ignore mind-numbing agonies from crippling injuries. Even after massive injuries like a chunk of flesh torn away by a predator, dolphins will feed, swim and play normally.

Interesting Dolphin Facts: 11-20

11. Dolphins also have the amazing power of healing. Their healing capacity is often described as alien-like or miraculous. They will simply regrow a chunk of flesh taken away by a predator just within 14 days and there will be absolutely no scars left behind.

12. Once a dolphin gets attacked by a predator such as a shark and incurs a massive injury, it will simply simply restrict its blood flow to the area of injury to prevent massive blood loss. The dolphin will simply constrict the blood vessels in the area of injury and prevent hemorrhage.

13. A dolphin moving at average speed exerts 200 pounds of thrust in water. At full speed, it can exert a thrust of 300 to 400 pounds. So with that can of speed, how fast can a dolphin swim? A dolphin can peak at 20 miles an hour when necessary!

14. Dolphins can achieve that kind of speed while swimming because of two reasons. The first reason is that they have a tubular body with pointed ends on both sides. The second reason is that they can convert 80% of their body energy into thrust. Humans are capable of converting only 4 percent of body energy into thrust.

15. Dolphins don’t get infections when they are bitten by filthy shark teeth or when they swim in bacteria-riddled ocean. Scientists say that dolphins known how to siphon off antibiotics produced by plankton and algae. In fact, scientists have actually found the chemicals produced by these microbes in the blubbers of dolphins. When the dolphins get injured, the blubbers at the injury site decompose and give off the antibiotics which help in healing. Scientists however don’t know exactly how the dolphins manage to store the chemicals instead of metabolizing them.

16. Dolphins can sense the magnetic field of earth using the magnetite crystals present in their brains. These magnetite crystals work as their GPS system in the vast oceans.

17. Dolphins often end up at beach and fail to return to the sea/ocean. Result? They die. But why? There is no definitive answer for this. There are currently two explanations. One group of scientists believe that the local magnetic rocks manage to reduce the strength of Earth’s magnetic field. As a result, dolphins close to the beach often fail to see the beach using their built in GPS until it is too late.

18. The second group of scientists blame the sun. They say that some beaches get higher radiation from sun and this higher flux eventually screws up the magnetic sense of the dolphins.

19. Interesting the dolphins that are rescued and sent back into sea often return and beach themselves again!

20. Scientists studied some Guiana dolphins in South American coast and found small depressions on their snout. The scientists figured out that these depressions actually work as electroreceptors. Put in other words, these depressions help them to pick up electrical impulses from muscles of nearby fish. Scientists say that echo-location fails to work at close distances and when sonar fails, dolphins use electroreception to find their prey.

Interesting Dolphin Facts: 21-30

21. Dolphins move in groups known as pods. A pod may consist of 2 dolphins and sometimes more than 100 dolphins. An average pod usually consists of 12 dolphins.

22. Dolphins maintain a very complex social structure and they have a wide range of emotions too! They understand humor.

23. Dolphins are born with one set of teeth and that is the only set they have until they die. In case their teeth fall off, they cannot grow back.

24. Dolphins are capable of killing sharks. In groups, they can actually ram a shark with their snouts and kill the killer!

25. Dolphins don’t really have any particular season for reproduction. They usually spend a lot of time in foreplay and enjoying sex!

26. Dolphins make use of the blowhole on top of their head for breathing.

27. A dolphin weighing 260 pounds will usually eat 33 pounds of fish every single day and will not gain weight at all.

28. Dolphins cannot breath under water. They come to the surface and expose their blowhole to open air to breath. If they need rest, they will again come to the surface and take rest with blowhole exposed so that they can continue to breathe when they rest. However, they will keep at least one half of their brain active for the blowhole to function because unlike humans, dolphins cannot breathe with their entire brain shut down.

29. Dolphins have been found to help fishermen. In fact, they actually play around the boats and send signals indicating the best time for casting nets. Once the nets are cast, the dolphins often herd the fish into the net!

30. Dolphins often get caught in fishing nets and end up drowning because they fail to come to the surface for breathing.

Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4