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This Day in History

Australian History

Thursday, September 15, 2011. :   The discovery by Australian researchers of a previously unknown species of bottlenose dolphin is announced.

     There are almost 40 species of dolphins worldwide. Bottlenose dolphins are the most common, and belong to the genus 'Tursiops'. Found in temperate and tropical seas all over the world, for many years it was believed there were only two species of bottlenose dolphins: the Common Bottlenose Dolphin and the Indo-Pacific Bottlenose Dolphin.

On 15 September 2011, the discovery of a third species of bottlenose dolphin was announced. The new species of 'Tursiops australis' was named by Researcher Kate Charlton-Robb at Australia's Monash University after she determined unique features and differences between the dolphin and other bottlenose dolphins. Also known as the Burrunan dolphin, its common name was derived from an aboriginal word in the Boonwurrung, Woiwurrung and Taungurung languages referring to a large sea fish. The species name of 'australis' came from the Latin adjective 'southern', and refers to the Australian range of this bottlenose dolphin.

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