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Rare dolphin calves sighted in Akaroa Harbour

Rare dolphin calves are again being sighted in Akaroa Harbour

photo credit; Jacob bt

Rare dolphin calves are again being sighted in Akaroa Harbour, which is always great news for the endangered species.

Spring has again seen Hector's dolphin calves spotted swimming with their mothers in the harbour, which is always exciting, Black Cat Cruises Managing Director Paul Bingham said.

"Hector's Dolphins are classified as endangered by the World Conservation Union (IUCN). Because of their coastal habitat and slow reproductive rate they are particularly vulnerable to entanglement in fishing gear, especially gill nets, so we never fail to get enthusiastic when calves are spotted.”

Bingham said guests on harbour cruises could clearly see the calves' stripes from being folded up inside mother's tummy as they able to swim as soon as they are born.

Females usually have one calf every two to three years. The calves are 50 to 60 centimetres long at birth and stay close to their mothers who provide them with milk and protection for about a year until they are old enough to fend for themselves.

Hector's dolphins are among the most endangered in the world.


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