Length

about 8.2 ft (males) & 7.5 ft (females)

Weight

up to 440 lb (male) & 330 lb (females)

Population

There are about 21,000 off the coasts of Washington, Oregon, and California.

Distribution

The Pacific White Sided Dolphin habitat is found in the cooler, temperate waters of the North Pacific. The Pacific White Sided Dolphin migration patterns are apparent, with them traveling down Southern California in the Winter and up to the Pacific Northwest in the summer.

Description

The Pacific White Sided Dolphin is known to be very active. They have distinct coloring, with white on their chins, throats and belly while they are dark gray on their beaks, flippers, backs, and dorsal fins. They are sometimes known as “hookfin porpoise” due to their large and curved dorsal fins. They love to travel in groups, ranging from 10-100 individuals! They enjoy being very active, often seen doing somersaults and bow-riding.

The Pacific White Sided Dolphins act similarly to humans, being that they are a part of close knit groups. If there is a sick dolphin, the group will tend and care for him/her until they are healthier. When communicating, young dolphins will swim next to adults and touch their flippers. As well, it has been found that the groups communicate with very low pitches, compared to the bottlenose and common dolphins. They feed on different kinds of prey, such as small schooling fish and squid. They have small teeth to help them grip their food, which they then swallow whole. Pacific White Sided Dolphins can live longer than 40 years, with females giving birth about every 3 years.