Dolphin Academy's Sleep Research

Overview

In January 2013 we started our sleep research project, which consisted of non-invasive around the clock observations of our dolphins. The research showed great and interesting findings about the way the dolphins spend their days and nights. We now know how much time each dolphin likes to sleep, where they like to spend their time, and what their favourite partners are. For example, our youngsters like playing with their half-brothers and half-sisters in the evening, before cuddling up with mom to go to sleep. 

The project is on-going, we are collecting more data every year and forming a life-long dataset of the (changing and evolving) daily rhythms of our dolphins. Adults, teenagers, calves, new-borns; males, females, boys, girls … everyone is included!

The observations are not the only part of this project, as we also try to explore more traits of sleeping, resting, and daily activities. One thing we find very interesting is how our dolphins brains work, and whether or not this is comparable to our own. Dolphins are, after all, believed to be one of the most intelligent species living on this planet.

Recently we have performed behavioural tests to see if our dolphins could link different feeding areas to different feeding times. This time-place-association research can tell us whether a dolphin, like most mammals, has an innate biological clock, useful for so many daily activities and rhythms.

Research

Numbers of dolphins

22

    

The research showed great and interesting findings about the way the dolphins spend their days and nights. We now know how much time each dolphin likes to sleep, where they like to spend their time, and what their favourite partners are.

Dna Samples 005