T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Dolphin (Hector's) Cephalorhynchus hectori

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla
Infraorder: Cetacea
Family: Delphinidae
Genus: Cephalorhynchus
Species: C. hectori
Binomial name: Cephalorhynchus hectori
Common name: Hector's dolphin

Cephalorhynchus hectori is one of two sub-species of Hector’s dolphins that exist. Hector's dolphin has a fragmented distribution in the inshore waters around the entire South Island. The other subspecies is the rare Māui dolphin which is only found in the inshore waters off the west coast of the North Island.

Hector's dolphin (Cephalorhynchus hectori) obtains a length of approximately 1.4 m and weigh >60 kg, it is one of the smallest cetaceans. and weigh >60 kg. The body shape is stocky, with no discernible beak. The back and sides are predominantly light grey, while the dorsal fin, flippers, and flukes are black. The eyes are surrounded by a black mask, which extends forward to the tip of the rostrum and back to the base of the flipper. A subtly shaded, crescent-shaped black band crosses the head just behind the blowhole. The throat and belly are creamy white, separated by dark-grey bands meeting between the flippers. A white stripe extends from the belly onto each flank below the dorsal fin. 
The most distinctive feature is the rounded dorsal fin, with a convex trailing edge and undercut rear margin. They are known to live to a maximum of about 20 years. It is estimated there are only 9000 of this species of dolphins left.

Set net fishing poses a major threat to Hector’s dolphin if they become tangled in set nets they suffocate. The last recorded killings of this dolphin killed in a single net in January 2018 off the Banks Peninsula on the east coast of the South Island.

 



Distribution map.


 An underwater video of a pod of Hector's dolphins Hectohttps://www.youtube.com/embed/ptLE8HOzxZ4


Thanks to Wikipedia for text and information:
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/