A Report on Spotted Dolphins
Maizie had to do a two week final project for school. Each kid had to pick an animal to research and then write a paper about it. In addition, they each made paper-mache models of their animals and did all their own research. Here is Maizie's report. I like to imagine Richard Attenborough narrating as I read it. :)
Table of Contents
One bright sunny morning the hot sun was beaming down on the gleaming ocean. What is that jumping through the water? It's a spotted dolphin, the most common dolphin in the world.
Food and Hunting
Spotted dolphins eat mackerel, squid, and crabs. But nursing mothers feed on flying fish. Spotted dolphins are carnivores, which means it eats meat. Spotted dolphins are also predators, which means it hunts other animals. Spotted dolphins get fish to eat by whacking the fish with their tail. This is called fish-whacking. Sometimes it kills the fish or it knocks the fish out. Another way is by echo location. Echo location is sound waves they use to find fish. They can also swim very fast. This helps them catch prey. They can also see very well. That helps them find food too.
Protection and Enemies
Sharks and people are spotted dolphin's enemies. Sharks try to eat the dolphins, so the dolphins ram their body into the shark making the shark swim away. As for people, fishermen catch the spotted dolphins in fishing nets causing the dolphins to drown. The babies have the same enemies and they use the same protection. The only enemy it can't protect itself from is a human.
A spotted dolphin is a mammal because it has fur, but not a lot. They also have warm blood, their blood is the same temperature all the time. Their babies are born alive and they have a backbone. They also breathe through lungs. They live in groups called pods. The male and female don't have special names. They have one baby at a time. The mother takes care of the calf. She teaches the calf how to hunt and use echo location.
Spotted dolphins live in three oceans: the Indian, the Pacific, and the Atlantic. The spotted dolphin does not live in the Arctic Ocean. The water they live in is salty. They only live in warm waters. You would see lots of water and fish in their habitat. Their habitat has three zones: the sunlight zone, the twilight zone, and the midnight zone.
Description and Unusual Features
A spotted dolphin has fur, not a lot. It has rough skin. They are gray with black strips and silver spots. They can weigh up to 200-262 pounds. They can also be 6-8 feet long and can have up to 162-170 teeth. They swim and dive using their fluke and flippers. Their unique feature is that they are very intelligent.
Spotted dolphins click, whistle, and squeak. They communicate to the pod, to find food, to find a mate, and if there is danger. They also use echo location. Echo location is sound waves that only other spotted dolphins can hear.
I picked spotted dolphin because I love dolphins and I think that spotted dolphins are the most interesting animals in the world. I hope you learned a lot in my report on spotted dolphins.
- carnivore (car-na-vor) - An animal that eats meat.
- calf (caf) - A baby spotted dolphin.
- mammal (mam-al) - An animal that is born alive, is warm blooded, has fur, has a backbone, and breathes through lungs.
- predator (pred-it-or) - An animal that hunts and eats other animals.
About the Author
Maizie Stevens is eight years old. She grew up in Winonia, Minnesota. She now lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She goes to Florida in the summer to visit her dad. Maizie lives with her mom, her mom's boyfriend and her two dogs, Sid and Luis. The school she goes to is Stevenson Elementary. Her hobbies are math, reading, playing outside, playing with her dogs, and playing with her friends.