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Bottlenose dolphins are probably the best-known species of dolphin– the species upon which everyone’s classical image of ‘a dolphin’ is based. The iconic ‘Flipper’, star of television programmes and films since the 1960’s, was a bottlenose dolphin, as are the majority of captive dolphins performing in marine parks around the world. Bottlenose dolphins are found in almost every ocean and sea, other than the coldest waters toward the poles. At present there are two recognized species of bottlenose dolphin, and in some cases, both species can be found in the same area. These are the common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), and the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus). In addition to this species distinction (see more details below), there is a great deal of variation between inshore and offshore populations of common bottlenose dolphins in different parts of the world. Populations differ greatly in average length, weight, appendages, external colouration, diet and behaviour. A third possible species -the Burrunan dolphin -has been proposed for inshore populations of bottlenose dolphins in Australia1, and scientists and geneticists around the world have dedicated a great deal of effort to better understanding the taxonomy of bottlenose dolphins. Like humans, different populations inhabit a wide variety of environments, and have adapted special diets, behaviour patterns, and external features to adapt to those habitats2. Wherever they are found, however, bottlenose dolphins tend to be one of the more approachable and active dolphin species, making them a popular target for dolphin watching activities.