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Whale and dolphin species guide

There are around 90 species of whales, dolphins and porpoises, known collectively as "cetaceans". From the enormous blue whale to the tiny vaquita and Hector's dolphin, you will find information and amazing facts about many of these incredible creatures in our species guide.

Whale and dolphin species

 All whales and dolphins can be divided into two categories: baleen whales and toothed whales. Toothed whales include the sperm whale, beaked whales, dolphins, porpoises and the beluga whale and narwhal. We have also included seal species seen in the Plymouth area where WDC's Marine Animal Rescue and Response (MARR) team responds to stranding events.

  • All
  • Baleen whales
  • Beaked whales
  • Beluga whale and narwhal
  • Dolphins
  • Porpoises
  • River dolphins
  • Sperm whales
  • Seals
Burmeister's porpoise

Burmeister’s porpoise

Chilean dolphin

Chilean dolphin

Clymene dolphin

Commerson's dolphin

Commerson’s dolphin

Bottlenose dolphin at surface

Common bottlenose dolphin

Common dolphin

Common dolphin

Cuvier's beaked whale © BMMRO

Cuvier’s beaked whale


Dall’s porpoise

Deraniyagala’s Beaked Whale

Ulla Ludewig

Dusky dolphin

Dwarf sperm whale

Dwarf sperm whale

False killer whale

False killer whale

Fin whale at surface

Fin whale

Franciscana dolphin


Fraser's dolphin

Fraser’s dolphin

Ganges river dolphin

Ganges river dolphin

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Bottlenose dolphin calf breaching with its whole body out of the water
Bottlenose dolphin calf


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Breaching North Atlantic right whale
Breaching North Atlantic Right Whale


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