What Kind Of Fish Do Dolphins Eat

What Kind Of Fish Do Dolphins Eat ?

Dolphins are marine mammals which are found in most oceans in the world. Out of the 24 species, almost 4 species live in fresh water. They inhabit shallow waters since fishes are in abundance here. They tend to migrate to different locations for reasons, such as shortage of preys of different species, in order to deliver in safer locations for better survival chances of the calves, to be in waters with temperate conditions and avoid predators. The type of fish that each species of dolphin consumes depends on where it lives and its habitat.


Some common species of fishes they feed on are mackerel, cod and herring. But the dolphins also feed on other life forms like crustaceans and cephalopods. Some other species of fishes include squids, Pacific sardines, anchovies, capelin, hake and salmon.

The quantity of fish that an average dolphin feeds on in order to perform its routine activities depends directly on the type of fish. A larger quantity of squid will have to be eaten in comparison to mackerel for the same amount of calorie intake. More the calorific value of the fish, easier will it be to maintain the temperature of their bodies. Depending on the habitat that the dolphins choose to reside in, the sources of food and nutrition will vary.

The bottlenose dolphins, which are found mostly in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, feed on fishes like mackerel, mullet and catfish. But they feed as easily on crabs, eels and shrimps.

Black dolphins found mostly near the coastal regions of Chile which are smaller in size usually feed on crustaceans, small fishes and cephalopods.

White sided dolphins found mostly in the Pacific thrive on herrings, squids, pollocks and anchovies.

Maui’s dolphin found off the New Zealand coast consume yellow eyed mullets, red cods and other living forms found on the floor of the ocean.

The killer whale species of dolphin which inhabit the northern and southern hemispheres closer to the poles feeds on other marine animals, like sea lions, sea turtle, seals, dolphins, sharks, penguins and whales.

Majority of the species of dolphins weigh in the range of two hundred to five hundred pounds and measure six to eight feet in length. This would require them to eat a diet weighing from 20 to 50 pounds every day. The food should be as nutritional as possible.

Compared to a black dolphin, which can sustain by feeding on small fish, a killer whale must choose its food for maximum benefits. A catch of any marine mammal will serve it better than consuming schools of fishes. While the effort in catching the marine mamma will be more, the killer whale will have better the nutritional gain.

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