The Namibian Dolphin Project | Dusky Dolphin

Species Profiles

Dusky Dolphin, Lagenorhynchus obscurus

Dusky dolphins are the least known of the ‘coastal’ dolphins of southern Africa. In Namibia, they hardly ever come close to shore, although they do down in South Africa. By looking at patterns across their range we hope to understand how they interact with their ecosystem

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Dusky dolphins are found off South America, New Zealand and the west coast of southern Africa.  There have been no dedicated ecological studies on dusky dolphins in southern Africa to date. They occur throughout the Benguela ecosystem and tend to range more wildly and further from shore than the Heaviside’s dolphins which use the same environment.

One of the goals of the offshore surveys that we’ll be doing in the Namibian Islands Marine Protected Area around Luderitz is to investigate distribution patterns and abundance of dusky dolphins in this area.  We’re also using photographic mark recapture to look at population size and movements of individuals between areas.