Dolphin

Dolphin

sketch

Family Coryphaenidae, DOLPHINS
Coryphaena hippurus


Description: bright greenish blue above, yellow on sides, with capability of flashing purple, chartreuse, and a wide range of other colors; body tapers sharply from head to tail; irregular blue or golden blotches scattered over sides; anterior profile of head on adult males is nearly vertical; head of females more sloping; the single dark dorsal fin extends from just behind the head to the tail; anal fin margin concave and extending from anus to tail.

Similar Fish: pompano dolphin, C. equisetis. The pompano dolphin has squarish tooth patch on tongue (oval tooth patch on dolphin) and fewer dorsal rays (48 to 55 versus 55 to 65 on dolphin).

Where found: OFFSHORE in warm waters. East of Cape Canaveral, Cocoa Beach, Melbourne Beach.

Size: common to 30 pounds.

*Florida Record: 77 lbs, 12 ozs.

Remarks: one of the fastest-growing fish, thought to live no more than 5 years; swimming speed is estimated at 50 knots; spawns in warm ocean currents throughout much of the year; young found in sargassum weed; feeds on flying fish and squid.