The Dusky Dolphin

The Dusky Dolphin

Master Acrobat Off Different Shores

1st Edition - July 17, 2009

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  • Editors: Bernd Wursig, Melany Wursig
  • Hardcover ISBN: 9780123737236
  • eBook ISBN: 9780080920351

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The Dusky Dolphin: Master Acrobat Off Different Shores covers various topics about the dusky dolphin, including its taxonomy, history and demography, ecology, and behavior. After introducing the dusky dolphin as a member of the genus Lagenorhynchus under the family Delphinidae, the book continues by describing its life history, its demographic patterns, and its role in the food web considering predation, parasitism, and competition. The book also includes chapters that discuss the interaction of the dusky dolphin with its habitats, such as the dusky dolphin’s sound production, its foraging at night and in daylight, its survival strategies in response to predator threats, the mating habits of New Zealand duskies, calf rearing, sexual segregation, and genetic relationships. Other chapters address the interaction of dusky dolphins with humans. This book offers information about dusky dolphins off Southern Africa and discussions about the patterns of sympatry in Lagenorhynchus and Cephalorhynchus. Finally, comparisons between dusky dolphins and great apes as large-brained mammals are also reviewed in this book.

Key Features

  • Only book fully devoted to the southern hemisphere "dusky" dolphin
  • Heavily illustrated with charts, figures, tables, and all color photos
  • Written by a cadre of experts intimately familiar with dolphin field work
  • Written in an accurate yet accessible style for the scientist and natural historian alike


Marine biologists; mammalogists; students of animal behavior; students of social ecology

Table of Contents

  • Preface

    About the Editors

    1. The Dusky Dolphins’ Place in the Delphinid Family Tree

    2. Dusky Dolphin Life History and Demography

    3. Dusky Dolphin Trophic Ecology: Their Role in the Food Web

    4. Acoustics of Dusky Dolphins

    5. Dusky Dolphins Foraging at Night

    6. Dusky Dolphins Foraging in Daylight

    7. Predator Threats and Dusky Dolphin Survival Strategies

    8. Mating Habits of New Zealand Dusky Dolphins

    9. Dusky Dolphin Calf Rearing

    10. Sexual Segregation and Genetic Relatedness in New Zealand

    11. Human Interactions with Dusky Dolphins: Harvest, Fisheries, Habitat Alteration, and Tourism

    12. Human Interactions with Dusky Dolphins: A Management Perspective

    13. Dolphin Swimming and Watching: One Tourism Operator’s Perspective

    14. Neglected But Not Forgotten—Southern Africa’s Dusky Dolphins

    15. Patterns of Sympatry in Lagenorhynchus and Cephalorhynchus: Dolphins in Different Habitats

    16. A Large-brained Social Animal

    17. Social Creatures in a Changing Sea: Concluding Remarks




Product details

  • No. of pages: 416
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Academic Press 2009
  • Published: July 17, 2009
  • Imprint: Academic Press
  • Hardcover ISBN: 9780123737236
  • eBook ISBN: 9780080920351

About the Editors

Bernd Wursig

Bernd Würsig, his students, and postdocs have studied marine mammals and sea birds on all continents, with present work mainly on dusky dolphins in diverse habitats of New Zealand, and beleaguered Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins of Hong Kong. His specialties are behavior and social strategies, especially as related to human disturbance. He has published and co-published about 180 peer review papers, over 50 popular articles, and 7 books. He is Distinguished Professor Emeritus in the Department of Marine Biology of Texas A&M University at Galveston.

Affiliations and Expertise

Texas A&M University, Galveston, Texas, USA

Melany Wursig

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