Cetacean species of Peru
More than 30 species of whales and dolphins have been identified in Peruvian waters. This equals roughly 37 % of the worlds whale and dolphin species, making Peru being one of the worlds best whale and dolphin watching destinations. Because there are no storms or rainfalls ever along the Peruvian coast and whales and dolphins are always present, the season for whale and dolphin watching in Peru is all year long – every day.
When whale watching and dolphin watching in Peru you can observe not only bottlenose dolphins and dusky dolphins, but also blue whales, humpback whales, sei whales, sperm whales, Bryde whales, fin whales, orcas, common dolphins and many more. Scientific studies of Mundo Azul have shown that Peru has one of the world’s highest densities of coastal bottlenose dolphins. If you want to support our cetacean conservation work while enjoying close encounters with whales and dolphins you can become a dolphin conservation volunteer with us or make a tour with our associated ecotourism operator Nature Expeditions.
Stay in touch with Mundo Azul! Sign up to our google group “Mundo Azul International” and receive news about our work and nature conservation in Peru, Web site updates, action alerts, suggestions on how you can participate or help, volunteer opportunities, internship and job openings and much more.
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Page author: Stefan Austermühle
For detailed information on the cetacean species of Peru, their natural history, distribution range and coservation status, choose from the list below:
Blue whale (Balaenopteridae musculus, Linnaeus, 1758)
Fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus, Linnaeus, 1758)
Sei whale (Balaenoptera borealis, Lesson, 1828)
Bryde whale (Balenoptera edeni, Anderson, 1878)
Minke whale (Balaenoptera bonaerensis, Burmeister, 1867)
Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae, Borowski, 1781)
Southern right whale (Eubalaena australis, Desmoilins, 1822)
Sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus, Linnaeus, 1758)
Pygmy sperm whale (Kogia breviceps, De Blainville, 1838)
Dwarf sperm whale (Kogia simus, Owen, 1866)
Bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus, Montagu, 1821)
Dusky dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obscurus, Gray 1828)
Common dolphin (Delphinus delphis, Linnaeus, 1758)
Longbeaked common dolphin (Delphinus capensis, Gray 1828)
Spotted dolphin (Stenella attenuata, Gray, 1846)
Spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris, Gray, 1828)
Striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba, Meyen, 1833)
Southern right whale dolphin (Lissodelphis peronii, Lacépéde, 1804)
Short-finned pilot whale (Globicephala macrorhynchus, Gray, 1846)
Long-finned pilot whale (Globicephala melas, Traill, 1809)
Risso’s dolphin (Grampus griseus, Cuvier, 1812)
Melon-headed whale (Peponocephala electra, Gray, 1846)
Rough-toothed dolphin (Stena bredanensis, Cuvier, 1823)
Pygmy killer whale (Feresa attenuata, Gray, 1874)
False killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens, Owen, 1846)
Orca, killer whale (Orcinus orca, Linnaeus, 1758)
Tucuxi (Sotalia fluviatilis, Gerais y Deville, 1853)
Amazon River Dolphin (Inia geofrensis, De Blainville, 1817)
Burmeisters porpoise (Phocoena spinipinnis, Burmeister, 1865)
Cuvier’s beaked whale (Ziphius cavirostris, Cuvier, 1823)
Gray’s beaked whale (Mesoplodon grayi, Von Haast, 1876)
Small beaked whale (Mesoplodon peruvianus, Reyes, Mead y Van Waerebeek, 1991)
Whale watching and conservation initiatives:
Whale and dolphin watching offers an economic alternative to whaling and support species conservation. Whale watching tours are also offering research opportunities. Support species conservation and research, while enjoying whales and dolphins in Peru with Nature Expeditions.
Become a dolphin conservation volunteer and support the conservation and research programs of Mundo Azul.
What we do to stop the dolphin slaughter in Peru:
According to our estimate up to 3000 dolphins are killed each year illegally in Peru for human consumption. In 2002 Mundo Azul started investigating the Peruvian black market on illegally caught dolphin meat. The dolphin meat is regularly landed at night on beaches near the ports in order to avoid the controls of harbor officials. At this point, the meat is already cut into small pieces and hidden in boxes, while heads, flukes, bones and intestines have been thrown over board before or while entering the harbor. The meat is then openly sold on local markets. Read more.
Mundo Azuls volunteers are engaged in undercover investigation of illegal sales of dolphin meat. We are then providing the collected intelligence to the Peruvian police and are actively supporting the implementation of police raids. We are also supporting the Peruvian police thru capacity building. Raising public awareness and environmental education are further activities of our dolphin conservation campaign. We are engaged in dolphin research providing us with important baseline information for conservation planning. Finally we are promoting whale and dolphin watching as a sustainable economic alternative to illegal dolphin killing.
Stay intouch with Mundo Azul! Sign up to our google group “Mundo Azul International” and receive news about our work and nature conservation in Peru, Web site updates, action alerts, suggestions on how you can participate or help, volunteer opportunities, internship and job openings and much more.
What you can do to stop the dolphin slaughter in Peru
Spread the word: share this web-page with your social network friends (see our add-it function on the right menu bar) or send out the link by email.
Become a dolphin conservation volunteer in Peru.
Sign on to the various action alerts and signature lists published regularly in Mundo Azuls web site.
Whale watching as an alternative to dolphin killing
Mundo Azuls whale and dolphin research
Freedom for dolphins – NO to captivity