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Phocoenoides dalli

Dall’s porpoise (Phocoenoides dalli) is a species of porpoise with a unique body shape. Namely, it has a very thick body and a small head. That said, its coloration is similar to that of an orca.

This species’ body ranges from very dark grey to black, and boasts demarcated white patches on the flank. Additionally, its dorsal fin is set just back from the middle of the back and stands erect. There is a a light grey “frosting” at the upper part of the dorsal fin and fluke. Another distinguishing feature of this animal is its fluke—which curves back towards its body.

Dall’s Porpoises are hugely active creatures. They will often zigzag around at great speed on or just below the surface of the water. This creates a spray called a “rooster tail”. The fastest of all small cetaceans, Dall’s porpoises can swim at up to 55 km/h. They live throughout the coastal waters of the Pacific Northwest and Alaska.

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