The type specimen is supposed to have come from the Cape of Good Hope, but this location is believed to be erroneous; it is now generally accepted that the type locality is the Malabar coast of India (Rice 1998, Jefferson and Hung 2004).
In general, Indo-Pacific Finless Porpoises occur in a narrow strip of shallow (usually <50 m deep) coastal marine waters (as well as some river mouths and estuaries) around the northern rim of the Indian and western Pacific Oceans from the Arabian (Persian) Gulf (Preen 2004, Collins et al. 2005) eastwards around the rim of the Indian Ocean to the Indo-Malay region and to Java, Indonesia (but apparently not the Philippines) and northwards to the Taiwan Strait and central Chinese waters (Gao 1991, Gao and Zhou 1995). This is the more tropical and wide-ranging of the two currently recognized species of finless porpoises. A record of the species from northern Chinese waters (Wang 1992) probably represents a rare or extralimital event. Finless porpoises are seen regularly (when sea conditions are favourable) in Sarawak, East Malaysia (Minton et al. 2011), in at least parts of Peninsular Malaysia (e.g. they are the most frequently seen cetaceans in Langkawi according to Louisa Ponnampalam, Reeves pers. comm. 2011), at least seasonally in Hong Kong (Jefferson et al. 2002a), and in parts of the western Taiwan Strait (Wang unpublished data). They are also present along the East Kalimantan coastline of Borneo (D. Kreb pers. comm. 2011).
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