Explaining the characteristics, ecology, and habitat of the Amazon river dolphin


We will explain the characteristics, ecology, and habitat of the Amazon river dolphin. It is the largest living dolphin species and lives primarily in South America. Unfortunately, it is listed as an endangered species. We will explain the detailed ecology and characteristics.

What is the Amazon river dolphin? About basic status

The Amazon river dolphin is a cetacean classified in the mammalian class Artiodactyla (Cetacean artiodactyla) and the Amazonian river dolphin family Amazon River dolphin genus. The scientific name is Inia geoffrensis. The body length is 2.8m and the weight is 100-160kg.

English(英名)Amazon river dolphin
scientific name(学名)Inia geoffrensis
classification(分類)Mammalia、 Artiodactyla/Cetartiodactyla、Iniidae、Inia
Weight(体重)100 – 160kg

About classification

The Amazon river dolphin was originally classified as a member of the family Pelfinidae, but it has now been divided into the Amazonidae family. We have compiled a list of similar types below.

Scientific Name
Amazon river dolphinInia geoffrensis geoffrensisEcuador, Brazil, and Peru
Bolivian river dolphinInia geoffrensis boliviensis d’OrbignyBolivia
Orinoco river dolphinInia geoffrensis humboldtiana Pilleri & GihrColombia and Venezuela
Araguaian botoInia araguaiaensis HrbekTocantins-Araguaia River Basin in the Amazon River Basin

About habitat

As mentioned above, Amazon river dolphins live throughout South America.

feature is? What kind of creature is it?

The Amazon river dolphin is the largest species of river dolphin. Its most distinctive feature is its snout and pink body color. Mainly bright pink, but also dark brown, cream, etc. The front teeth are sharp and pointed, and are used for catching fish rather than chewing food. Although their eyes are extremely small, their eyesight is very high. The pectoral fins are large relative to the body length and curve backwards. They usually travel alone or in pairs.

What is the ecology like?

Amazon river dolphins live by eating fish and squid that live in rivers. Breeding is seasonal, with birth occurring from May to June. The gestation period is estimated to be about 11 months, and lactation takes about a year. Dolphins become independent within two to three years. The average lifespan of Amazon river dolphins in the wild is unknown. Their lifespan in captivity is 10 to 30 years.

Is the Amazon river dolphin an endangered species?

Unfortunately, the Amazon river dolphin is listed as an endangered species (Red List) according to information. It is also listed in Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), and international trade is strictly restricted. Due to their pink color and larger body size than humans, both males and females are easy targets in daily life. Many dolphin species are in a critical situation. Dam construction is also a nuisance.

Overfishing by local fishermen

Amazon river dolphins are overfished by local fishermen, and are removed for consumption as meat or because they interfere with fishing operations. Despite Brazil banning the killing of Amazon river dolphins, killings continue.

Tropical rainforest pollution and destruction

The biggest problem is due to water pollution and environmental destruction. As a result, the dolphins’ health is compromised and they live in extremely dangerous conditions. Dumping of mercury and other powerful chemicals into watersheds from industrial mining is harmful to life.

River dolphin world declaration

In 2024, the Global River Dolphin Declaration was adopted. We aim to reverse the decline in river dolphin populations around the world. As of early 2024, 11 of the 14 countries that keep river dolphins have signed the declaration.

Can Amazon river dolphins be kept in captivity?

Unfortunately, it is listed as an endangered species. Furthermore, international trade is severely restricted by CITES, making it extremely difficult to keep Amazon river dolphins in captivity.


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