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Amazing Dolphin Facts to Read Before a Florida Holiday

Alongside the likes of meeting favourite Disney characters and those from their favourite films at Universal Studios, Orlando, Florida holds another face of appeal for children- that of the friendly dolphin at SeaWorld Orlando and Orlando’s Discovery Cove. The dolphin is a fascinating creature and swimming with dolphins is a life-long dream that can come true for many at this fantastic park. Before the off, broaden your dolphin knowledge with this fascinating selection of facts.

Their teeth and appetite

Alongside swimming with dolphins, feeding these majestic sea creatures is another incredible experience, but did you know that different members of the dolphin family have varying numbers of teeth? Ranging from 8 to 250, the type of dolphin determines how many teeth they need to survive in the wild, with the classic bottlenose having around 88- 100. Dolphins don’t actually use their teeth to chew, like humans do, instead they use them to catch their food and then swallow it whole.

They do this numerous times a day as dolphins have a very hearty appetite, eating around 33 pounds of fish each and every day. This figure is equivalent to a human eating 15- 22 pounds of steak a day, leaving the typical dolphin weighing around 260 pounds.

Their appearance and skills

Dolphins are notoriously clever and intelligent animals, but they are also fantastic swimmers and divers. The deepest dive ever recorded by a bottlenose dolphin was made by that of US Navy trained dolphin Tuffy, at 300 metres deep.

To stay at a reasonable temperature when completing tasks in cold water dolphins have a thick layer of fat underneath their skin called blubber. The thickness of blubber between dolphin species determines how cold the water is that they come from, with dolphins living in colder temperatures needing a thicker layer.

Hair keeps humans warm and while dolphins don’t have hair as adults, they are actually born with whiskers. These whiskers fall out soon after birth, but they are visible on their upper jaw (rostrum) before this time.

Their popularity in the media

Understandably, these cute creatures have been the subject of much popular culture in history but they have actually been the subject of at least 17 popular films. Flipper, Dolphin Tale and Free Willy, as the orca is also a member of the dolphin family, are all great films to watch before a trip to Orlando to get the kids even more excited about meeting the cetacean mammals in real life!

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