First Records of Long-beaked Common Dolphins, Delphinus capensis, in Canadian Waters


  • John K. B. Ford Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Pacific Biological Station, 3190 Hammond Bay Road, Nanaimo, British Columbia V9T 6N7



Long-beaked Common Dolphin, Delphinus capensis, Short-beaked Common Dolphin, Delphinus delphis, stranding, entanglement, feeding


The genus Delphinus has recently been determined to be comprised of two species, the Short-beaked Common Dolphin, D. delphis, and the Long-beaked Common Dolphin, D. capensis. D. delphis is regularly observed in eastern Canadian waters, but is known only from a single stranding in British Columbia. Two specimen records and a series of sightings of D. capensis in British Columbian waters during 1993-2003, detailed here, are the first for this species in Canada. D. capensis normally ranges only as far north as central California, and its abundance in those waters increases in association with warm-water oceanographic events. Although the species appears to be rare in British Columbia, future sightings during warm-water periods might be anticipated.