Abu Dhabi: Bottlenose dolphins have been spotted off the Abu Dhabi Corniche Beach, said an official at the Environment Agency in Abu Dhabi (EAD).
The EAD has been receiving reports about the appearance of what was described as "a big fish'' off the new Abu Dhabi Corniche Beach.
The reports were received from a number of sources including the Abu Dhabi Municipality and the Management Office of the new Abu Dhabi Corniche Beach.
After an investigation conducted by EAD experts, which included sea trips and interviews with several beach-goers, it has been revealed that the reported "big fish'' was actually a dolphin - most probably a Bottlenose dolphin.
"Dolphins are certainly not dangerous to humans. They are naturally friendly and can be playful. Moreover, there have even been several global reports of dolphins coming to the rescue of humans or even assisting them while in distress at sea. There is no reason for the public to fear in this regard, we call on them to not harm them and respect these beautiful marine mammals'', said Thabit Al Abdessalaam, Director of Biodiversity Management - Marine sector at EAD.
- The Bottlenose dolphin got its name from its elongated upper and lower jaws which form a beak-like snout.
- Adult bottlenose dolphins range in length from 2 to almost 4 meters long and weigh between 150 to 400 kg.
- They feed on krill, fish and squid. The colour of their back and dorsal fin is grey and the dorsal fin has a slightly hooked tip.
- They occur in tropical and temperate waters all over the world and are a common feature in the Arabian Gulf waters including the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and the UAE.
- They reach sexual maturity at about 10-12 years old. Calves nurse over a year and remain with their mothers for 3 to 6 years.
- Bottlenose dolphins are relatively more playful and friendly than other species of dolphins.