The Quiet Dolphin

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Some argue for the existence of a southern species in Bolivia, distinct from botos in more northerly Amazonian reaches. The Marine Mammal Society is not yet convinced of this proposed new species. If they wanted to they could rip those children apart because they are pretty big and they have pretty strong jaws. Also an enigma is exactly how many botos there are in the Amazon's rivers. The International Union for Conservation of Nature lists them as " data deficient ", but says they may be at risk in some parts of their range.

One challenge to visually counting the numbers of these dolphins is that their riverine waters are often murky with silt.

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Botos do not exactly go out of their way to make scientific counts easy, either. Typically, "they just put the tip of their head out of the water", says Alves dos Santos. Even when seen at the water's surface, they lack the prominent dorsal fin used to photo-identify individuals in other dolphin species.

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Botos have a subtle ridge on their back, so it is still possible to "fingerprint" individuals using the unique pigmentation patterns, nicks, curves and wounds on its skin. But it is tricky. Their shy, elusive behaviour and the amount of time they spend underwater means that even the tally of dolphins counted from the same boat — some observers at the front, others at the back — does not always match.

Paradoxically, though, some botos go out of their way to make themselves incredibly easy to spot. This can be seen at a market in the town of Mocajuba in Para State, Brazil. There, botos play with local children taking a break from helping their family with sales at the market. The water is clear, and Alves dos Santos has seen the dolphin behaviour in detail. One of the fascinating things about this behaviour, he says, is the lack of aggression shown by the dolphins.

But the botos do nothing of the sort. The children stroke and play with the dolphins almost every morning. Locals report that this interaction has been happening for 30 years. At the market, botos are always in groups, never alone. Alves dos Santos has discovered that some individuals come to the market repeatedly, year after year. Is that to take advantage of an unusual situation — humans feeding them scraps from the market — or are they in stable groups because they are close relatives?

He hopes to find an answer by exploring the dolphins' family tree. Attracting dolphins with fish to take tiny tissue samples for his DNA family tree analysis, "you see how intelligent they are", says Alves dos Santos. The dolphins are often assumed to be blind because their eyes are small. But they are not: instead they are curious, and "they look into your eyes". Although botos are difficult to visually count, there may be another way to work out how many individuals remain in the wild: recording their vocalisations.

Once thought to be a quiet species, botos turn out to be anything but.

Rather like bat clicks, the clicks that make up the bulk of boto communications are inaudible to humans. Marie Trone of Florida's Valencia College, with two retired acousticians from the US Navy and two researchers at the University of Toulon in France, is studying individual differences in boto sounds. Clicks have been successfully used to distinguish between individual bats.

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Trone hopes to do the same for botos. If the researchers can distinguish between the sounds of individuals, they might provide a useful tool for counting how many of these hard-to-see animals there really are. So far, their method shows promise. As fish eaters, botos sometimes have a challenging relationship with human fishers. In parts of the Peruvian and Brazilian Amazon, botos are killed for use as catfish bait.

Apartment Dolphin Leap 7, Walvis Bay, Namibia -

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There was a problem loading the reviews. Try again. I asked for late check-Out and they didn't have a problem. The road noise from the vehicles passing since the property is close to the main road. The place was need and tidy and we'll kept. It was also very secure. Clear communication throughout Easy key collection No issues to report and will stay there again and again in the future. Smell as well as not cleaned at all. Location and parking. There was nothing not to like, Loved it! I loved everything about it. The apartment is perfectly safe and the area is so peaceful also walking distance to the quiet beach, furnished so well and loved the fresh colors of green all over the place, enough cutlery and dishwasher was a added bonus, new fluffy bedding was also somthing we all enjoyed truly loved visiting at dolphin leap would definitely be visiting again in December.

Did not have a sea view but beach very close.

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The traffic on the road nearby could be heard at night. Very safe and secure. Error: Please enter a valid email address. Error: Oops! An error has occurred. We've sent you an email so you can confirm your subscription. Invite Hosts List Your Property. We have more than 70 million property reviews, and they're all from real, verified guests. The only way to leave a review is to first make a booking. That's how we know our reviews come from real guests who have stayed at the property. When guests stay at the property, they check out how quiet the room is, how friendly the staff is, and more.

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Clear communication throughout Easy key collection No issues to report and will stay there again and again in the future Helen, United Kingdom. It was also very secure Sumaya, South Africa. Excellent location! Dolphin Leap 7 Reserve now. Dolphin Leap 7 home and apartment-like properties by Booking. These represent quality ratings based on factors like facilities, size, location, and service. Helen United Kingdom. Maria Namibia. Nerina Namibia. Sumaya South Africa. Deserey Namibia. Monique Namibia. Isabella South Africa. Gabriella Namibia.

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Hiking can be enjoyed nearby. Show me more. What would you like to know? Enter your feedback I already have a booking with this property Submit. Thank you for your time Your feedback will help us improve this feature for all of our customers Close. Missing some information? Free parking. Pet friendly. Lock in a great price for your upcoming stay Get instant confirmation with FREE cancellation on most rooms!

Availability We Price Match. When would you like to stay at Dolphin Leap 7? Reservations longer than 30 nights are not possible. Enter your dates to check availability. Your departure date is invalid. Check-in Date. Check-out Date. Area Info — Excellent location — show map.

Fuel Station and 24hr Cafe Ski lift. Are you missing any information about this area? Parking Free! Parking garage Street parking Secure parking. Internet Free! Pets Free! Accessibility Lower sink Upper floors accessible by stairs only. Building Characteristics Private apartment in building Semi-detached. Front Desk Services Safe. Miscellaneous Smoke-free property Non-smoking rooms. Languages Spoken Afrikaans English. What topic s do you want to know more about? Hairdryer Bathroom features shower, bathtub, etc.

Policies Pet policies Cancellation policies Couples policies are unmarried individuals allowed? Other Enter your feedback. Thanks for your help! Your opinion helps us figure out what kinds of info we should ask properties for. Back to property. Missing some info? House Rules Dolphin Leap 7 takes special requests — add in the next step! No age restriction There's no age requirement for check-in. Cash only This property only accepts cash payments. Smoking Smoking is not allowed. The Fine Print. A damage deposit of NAD is required on arrival. That's about This will be collected as a cash payment.

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