The Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphin is counter-shaded (dark on the dorsal
side; light on the ventral side). This camouflage technique was used in World War II where fighter planes,
like the Hellcat pictured below, were painted in this same manner.
When approached from underneath, a counter-shaded object blends in
with the light-colored sky. When approached from above, a counter-shaded object blends in with the dark environment below.
This is a common camouflage feature of many animals which either live in or occasionally enter the water, providing some protection
from attack by predators approaching them from either above or below. In some areas bottlenose dolphins may be found
with ventral spotting, an additional camouflage advantage.
Understanddolphins.com contains information condensed from a number of reputable technical sources,
peer reviewed journal articles, and respected dolphin research facilities, as well as from my personal experiences and
observations as a dolphin VIP Tour Guide and Educator.
I have made every attempt to support the information presented in this site with video and still
photographic images. On a regular basis I plan to produce more of these images and will continue to update the site with these
as well as with any new and scientifically verified information which becomes available.