Dolphins and Porpoises
By Guy Belleranti
Porpoises and dolphins are fascinating and beautiful sea creatures. They are in the group of whales called toothed whales.
Many people think dolphins and porposes are fish, but this is simply not true.
They are mammals, just like dogs, cats, horses, cows, deer, and humans. Like all mammals, dolphins and porpoises are warm-blooded, which means their body temperature always stays the same. While most other animals are born from eggs, mammals are born alive. Also, mammals have lungs and breathe air. Dolphins and porpoises need to come up to the surface of the water to breathe through the blowhole in the top of their heads.
Most porpoises and dolphins eat fish, squid, and crustaceans. However, the largest species of dolphin, the orca, also hunts seals, penguins, walruses, and whales.
Both porpoises and dolphins use echolocation. This means they send out sounds and then listen for the echoes bouncing back. Echolocation helps them find food and escape predators.
Both porpoises and dolphins are toothed whales. However, porpoise teeth are shaped differently than dolphin teeth. Dolphins have sharp, cone-shaped teeth, but porpoise teeth are spade-shaped and flatter.