Monday, February 18, 2013

Risso's Dolphin Found On The Shore Of Sardinia West Coast

     Risso Dolphin found on west coast in Sardinia                                               Photo taken by Treklightly 

Yesterday a few fishermen came across the remains of a Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus), a dolphin unlike other species, shows a rounded head. Adult Risso's dolphins are usually dark gray with extensive white scarring. The scars can be scratches, splotches, or circular marks and, in some animals, can be so extensive that the entire body appears to be white. This scarring may come from bites from other Risso's dolphins, squid bites, or parasites.

This specimen was a little more than 2 meters long.  It was discovered a considerable distance from the line of the sea, within a narrow bay where the current game brings numerous shipwrecks. This dolphin was beached and probably a result of the strong disturbance in recent days with waves reported at over 7 meters. 

This dolphin had a large laceration with wide excision of tissue in the body in the back, perhaps due to the impact with the keel or the propellers of a ship. The Grampi are dolphins that can come from adults to over 4 meters in length and 600 kg in weight, live in small groups of 3-50 who represent "families" and prefer coastal areas 

deep near drop-offs where they can find their favorite food, usually cephalopods such as octopus or squid.  Little is known of the migration path of these dolphins near where this specimen was found, but some have reported sightings seasonal movement from north to south near Compiano, and sightings in Europe date back to the summer of Scotland and in the winter they can be spotted in Mediterranean waters. 

Learn more about Risso's dolphins at  

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