Local Names: Wilson's Dolphin (after the Antarctic explorer);
Southern White-Sided Dolphin; Delfin Cruzado (Spanish).
Hourglass Dolphins are essentially black and white in a crude
hourglass pattern. The short beak is black, as are the flippers,
dorsal fin and flukes. There us a dark patch around each eye.
The cape and sides are also black, the latter interrupted
by two white patches which are joined in a criss-cross 'hourglass'
shape. The underside is also white. There is a strongly curved
keel under the tail stock. It is thought that Hourglass Dolphins
reach a maximum length of between 1.6-1.8m.
Due to the striking pattern of colours, Hourglass Dolphins
are not likely to be confused with any other species.
Hourglass Dolphins prefer deep pelagic waters with a surface
temperature of 1-10ºC.
It is thought that Hourglass Dolphins prey on small fish.
This species is normally found in units of between 1-6 animals,
and occasionally up to 40 individuals gather together for
a short amount of time. They associate with Fin Whales and
Southern Bottlenose Whales and are highly active. They are
well-known for bowriding, and when porpoising they create
a highly visible spray. They are commonly seen travelling
through a series of low-angled leaps.