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28 Feb 2023
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Dolphins capture our imaginations in a way that makes everyone feel like a kid again when they see them in the wild. These incredible creatures are known for their beauty, intelligence, and playfulness. Before you set your sights on spotting a dolphin, check out these fascinating facts.

  1. Dolphins talk to each other. If you see them slap the water with their tails or bodies, that’s one form of communication. They also make squeaks, buzzes, whistles, and clicks audible from miles away.

  2. Dolphins are social. They live in communities based on their life cycle. Maternity bands raise their calves together; juvenile groups consist of dolphins gaining independence; and a bachelor group consists of two to three adult males. 

  3. Dolphins are fast. Dolphins can swim up to 20 miles an hour on average, though some species reach speeds of 35 mph or faster.  

  4. Dolphins have a sixth sense. They can “see” what’s nearby with a biological sonar called echolocation. 

  5. Dolphins live a long life. They can live to be 30 to 50 years of age.

  6. Dolphins don’t chew. They grip fish in their teeth and swallow them whole.

  7. Dolphins are herders. Strand feeding takes place in the tidal creeks and marshes along Georgia’s coast, most often from August to November. Dolphins herd fish onto the mud flats then pick up the fish off the mud.

  8. Dolphins ride the waves. It is not unusual to see dolphins “bow ride” on ships and surf waves close to the beach. 

  9. Dolphins sleep with one side of their brain at a time. Each half of their brain gets a break for a few minutes at a time all day long. 

  10. Dolphins are protected. The Marine Mammal Protection Act makes it illegal to harass or feed dolphins.

Visitors sometimes spot bottlenose dolphins from Tybee Island beaches, but take a dolphin tour to get up close and personal.

Book with Capt. Mike’s Dolphin Adventure or Capt. Derek’s Dolphin Adventure for a memorable family adventure. The waters off Tybee Island host a resident pod of bottlenose dolphins that numbers between 25 and 50. There are also schools of dolphins that make their way up the close at various times of year. 

You can also learn more about dolphins with a visit to the Tybee Marine Science Center during your Tybee Island vacation.