African Zoology

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First record of a vagrant Commerson’s dolphin, Cephalorhynchus commersonii, at the southern African continental shelf

P.J.N. de Bruyn, G.J.G. Hofmeyr, M.S. de Villiers


Commerson’s Dolphins Cephalorhynchus commersonii are distributed in two disjunct populations, one around southern South America and the other around the sub-Antarctic Kerguelen Islands. These populations have been shown to be morphologically and genetically distinct and movement between the two populations is unlikely. We report on the sighting of a single specimen over the South African continental shelf on 13 November 2004. To our knowledge this is the first record of this species in South African waters and such a vast distance (over 4000 km) from the known distribution limits.

Keywords: Cephalorhynchus commersonii, vagrant, distribution, South Africa[131:FROAVC]2.0.CO;2
AJOL African Journals Online