Delphinidae — Overview

Dolphins, Killer Whales, Pilot Whales, and Relatives learn more about names for this taxon

Diagnostic Description

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The family Delphinidae has been called a 'taxonomic trash basket', because many small to medium-sized odontocetes of various forms have been lumped together in this group for centuries. Consequentely, the so-called delphinids are diverse in form. They range in size from 1 to 1.88 m dolphins of the genera Sotalia and Cephalorhynchus, to the killer whale, in which males can reach lengths of at least 9.8 m. However, most delphinids share the following characteristics: a marine habitat, a noticeable beak, conical teeth, and a large falcate dorsal fin set near the middle of the back. There are exceptions to everyone of these rules, except the presence of basically conical teeth. <123>


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Source: World Register of Marine Species

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