Species Profile and Threats Database

For information to assist proponents in referral, environmental assessments and compliance issues, refer to the Policy Statements and Guidelines (where available), the Conservation Advice (where available) or the Listing Advice (where available).
In addition, proponents and land managers should refer to the Recovery Plan (where available) or the Conservation Advice (where available) for recovery, mitigation and conservation information.

EPBC Act Listing Status Cetacean
Adopted/Made Recovery Plans
Policy Statements and Guidelines Marine bioregional plan for the North-west Marine Region (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC), 2012y) [Admin Guideline].
Information Sheets Australian National Guidelines for Whale and Dolphin Watching (Department of the Environment and Heritage, 2005e) [Information Sheet].
Non-statutory Listing Status
IUCN: Listed as Data Deficient (Global Status: IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: 2013.1 list)
Scientific name Stenella longirostris [29]
Family Delphinidae:Cetacea:Mammalia:Chordata:Animalia
Species author (Gray,1828)
Infraspecies author  
Distribution map Species Distribution Map

This is an indicative distribution map of the present distribution of the species based on best available knowledge. See map caveat for more information.

Illustrations Google Images

The current conservation status of the Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin, Stenella longirostris, under Australian Government legislation and under international conventions, is as follows:

National: Listed as Cetacean under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

International: Listed under Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).

Listed as Lower Risk - Conservation dependent under the IUCN Red List 2008.

Listed as Migratory under the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS).

Some experts consider the Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin a priority species for conservation listing (Bannister et al. 1996), however, information on this species is too scarce to heighten its listing status (DEWHA 2008b; Ross 2006).

Scientific name: Stenella longirostris

Common name: Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin

Other names: Spinners; Spinner Dolphins

There is significant geographic variation in Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins, both in size and in colour pattern between regions (Rice 1998). Three subspecies, S. l. orientalis, S. l. centroamericana and S. l. longirostris have been described (Perrin 1990), with S. l. longirostris occuring in the Australian region (Bannister et al. 1993). A fourth, very small subspecies, S. l. roseiventris (Wagner 1846), known as "dwarf spinners", inhabits shallow water in the Gulf of Thailand, the Timor Sea and the Arafura Sea (Perrin et al. 1999). The relationship between this diminutive form and Spinner Dolphins in the Great Barrier Reef region requires clarification; in particular, the subspecific status, distribution and lifestyle, including potential migration patterns, breeding and feeding, and association with particular reefs, are of particular interest (Perrin et al. 1989; Ross 2006). Specimens from the Great Barrier Reef area appear to be intermediate between S. l. longirostris and S. l. roseiventris in terms of body length and skull size (Perrin et al. 1999).

The Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin is a slender dolphin with an extremely long, thin beak. The head is also slender at the apex of the melon, but there is still a definite crease there. The dorsal fin ranges from slightly falcate (sickle-shaped) to being erect and triangular, with males primarily exhibiting the latter shape on sexual maturity (Jefferson et al. 1993; Leatherwood & Reeves 1983; Perrin et al. 1991). The tail stock in males may often be particularly deepened, with an elongated post-anal keel of connective tissue.

Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins exhibit a three-part colour pattern: a dark cape extending beyond the dorsal fin to approximately halfway along the tail stock; light grey sides; and a white belly (Perrin et al. 1991). The upper beak is dark in colour, while the lower jaw is white with a dark tip. There are distinct stripes running eye-to-flipper and eye-to-apex of melon.

Mature Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins range from 129 to 235 cm in length and 23 to 78 kg in weight, depending on the population they belong to (Perrin 2002). Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins exhibit sexual dimorphism, with males reaching a maximum length of 235 cm and females 204 cm (Bannister et al. 1996; Perrin & Reilly 1984). The smallest physically mature animals recorded are a male, 136 cm long, and a female, 129 cm long, from the Gulf of Thailand (Perrin 1990). Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins in northern Australian waters are larger than the Thailand specimens, yet smaller than other records from the Indo-Pacific, with a minimum adult length of 142 cm and a maximum length of 158 cm (Hembree 1986 as cited by Perrin 1990). Adult Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins from northern Australia weigh between 24 and 28.5 kg (mean 26.5 kg) (Ross 2006). The maximum age recorded for Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins is 22 years.

Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins are known to congregate in groups of over 1000 animals, but generally the group size is less than 250 (Leatherwood & Reeves 1983). There is some segragation by age and sex. Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins often associate with the Pantropical Spotted Dolphin as well as Yellowfin Tuna and sea birds. This association is probably linked to feeding. They also associate with small to medium-sized whales. The species is very acrobatic and seemingly playful, taking its name from its ability to leap and spin longitudinally while in the air. Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins often ride the bow wave of vessels (Bannister et al. 1996; Perrin 1998; Ross 2006).

In Australia, there are records of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins from Western Australia, as far south as Bunbury (33°19' S), as well as from the Northern Territory (including numerous records of these dolphins caught in the Arafura and Timor seas as bycatch in the gillnet fishing industry during 1981–85), along the east coast from Queensland to NSW (Bannister et al. 1996), including the Great Barrier Reef (Marsh 1990).

The current extent of occurrence for Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins is estimated to be greater than 20 000 km² (based on the Australian Economic Exclusion Zone (200 nautical miles, north of 33º S and generally deeper than 200 m but also on the continental shelf) (Peddemors & Harcourt 2006, pers. comm.). Increased ocean temperatures predicted by climate change scenarios could potentially increase the extent of occurrence with warmer water extending beyond 33° S.

The area of occupancy of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins cannot be calculated due to the sparsity of sighting records for a large proportion of the range. However it is likely to be greater than 20 000 km² (Peddemors & Harcourt 2006, pers. comm.). Future expansion of pelagic gillnet fisheries may result in increased incidental catches, potentially depleting local waters and leading to a decrease in area of occupancy.

Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins of the offshore form are considered to occur in one location as there are no known pelagic barriers to movement. However, those found in the Great Barrier Reef may constitute a separate subspecies, thereby leading to this species yielding more than one location for Australia.

Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins are found in tropical, subtropical and, less frequently, in warm temperate waters. Their global range is between approximately 30–40° N and 20–30° S (DEWHA 2008a) in the Indian, Pacific and Atlantic Oceans (DEWHA 2008). Their primary distribution is in pelagic zones, but they are frequently found over shelf waters. Some forms are regularly found in shallow waters, particularly near islands and shallow reefs (Leatherwood & Reeves 1983; Perrin 2002). In the western tropical Indian Ocean and eastern tropical Pacific they have been recorded in oceanic waters hundreds of kilometres from the nearest land (Ballance & Pittman 1998).

Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin populations have primarily been assessed in areas where they were extensively hunted or caught in fisheries, primarily in the eastern tropical Pacific. It is estimated that over 1.5 million Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins existed in the eastern tropical Pacific in the late 1980s (Wade & Gerrodette 1993). More recent surveys show substantial variability in population estimates, but the recovery rate of eastern-form Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins (S. l. orientalis) in this region has been slower than expected in view of their reproductive potential (Reeves et al. 2003). They continue to be captured, albeit in far smaller numbers, in the tuna purse seine fishery (Reeves et al. 2003).

In a survey of the western tropical Indian Ocean, Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins were the most abundant species encountered (>10 800 individuals on the survey track), with large numbers sighted in both oceanic waters and in areas close to islands such as the Maldives and Sri Lanka (Balance & Pittman 1998). Large catches of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins in gillnets and by harpooning in Sri Lanka and the Philippines have occurred for the past 20 years, although no assessment of past or present abundance of affected populations has been made. Another area of concern is the Gulf of Thailand, where Dwarf Spinners (S. l. roseiventris) are subject to bycatch in shrimp trawls (Perrin et al. 1989). There are no catch monitoring estimates available for this population (Reeves et al. 2003). A small cetacean fishery also takes some Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins in the Solomon Islands (Ross 2006).

There are no estimates of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin population size, either globally or for Australia, so the proportion of the global population in Australian waters is unknown. It is also unknown whether the Australian Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins are a distinct population, as their subspecific status requires clarification with respect to their affinities with the dwarf form from Thailand or the other forms found elsewhere in the Indo-Pacific. If the Australian Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins are closely affiliated to those of neighbouring countries, then incidental bycatch and harpooning threats to those populations may affect the Australian population.

Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins are not well surveyed in Australian waters. The offshore distribution is primarily assumed from incidental sightings, plus beach-cast and reported by-caught animals. However, these methods are believed to result in reliable distributional information for this species. Limited aerial surveys in the Great Barrier Reef have not provided sufficient data to allow analysis of distribution and population size of the Spinner Dolphins found in the Marine Park.

In October 2007 a Whale and Dolphin Sighting Report conducted by the National Cetacean Sightings Program (2007) observed a pod of 30 Spinner Dolphins 120 km north-west of Barrow Island (20░09' S and 114░24' E), Western Australia.

No population size is known, although Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins are not considered rare. In each ocean surveyed, they are amongst the most abundant cetaceans, numbering several hundred thousand animals. The species is therefore potentially abundant in Australian waters and certainly likely to exceed 10 000 mature individuals (Peddemors & Harcourt 2006, pers. comm.).

The lack of abundance and distribution data prohibits definitive assessment of the Australian populations of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins but elsewhere in their range their distribution appears split into near-shore and oceanic populations, the latter showing subspecific latitudinal population separation (Perrin et al. 1991; Wade & Gerrodette 1993). It is possible that a similar separation may occur in Australian territorial waters, but this requires further research particularly regarding the form found in the Great Barrier Reef.

No population trends can be calculated due to a paucity of survey data, but the population of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins can be assumed to have been nominally reduced due to human-induced mortalities. Ongoing incidental captures and directed takes in neighbouring countries are the most likely cause of potential future population decline. However, little quantitative data are available.

No extreme fluctuations are known to occur in populations of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins. There is some evidence of seasonal movements, especially in the 'Whitebelly' areas outside the core range of the eastern-form in the eastern tropical Pacific (Perrin et al. 1991), but these are unlikely to be at the scale of one order of magnitude of the total population size.

It is possible that the Great Barrier Reef is a key locality for an apparently smaller form of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin found in these waters. No key localities are known for the offshore Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin form.

All cetaceans are protected within The Australian Whale Sanctuary under the EPBC Act. The Sanctuary includes all Commonwealth waters from the 3 nm State waters limit out to the boundary of the EEZ (i.e. out to 200 nm and further in some places). The Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin is also subject to International Whalig Comission regulations and protected within Indian Ocean Sanctuary and Southern Ocean Sanctuary.

Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins are primarily pelagic (occurring in open ocean) but they can be neritic (occurring over the continental shelf) in some regions. They occur in tropical, subtropical and occasionally temperate waters around the world. Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins associate with tuna, Pantropical Spotted Dolphins and sea birds under certain oceanographic conditions, such as well-defined, shallow, pelagic habitats about 100 m deep, in restricted areas (Ross 2006).

Some populations of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins (e.g. off Hawaii and on the Great Barrier Reef) show diurnal movement patterns, resting close inshore within protected reefs and then moving offshore to feed at night. Offshore in the eastern tropical Pacific, there appears to be a close association with seasonal shoaling at a thermocline ridge (Reilly 1990). In the Gulf of Thailand and northern Australia, Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins appear to be more closely associated with shallow water (less than 50 m depth).

Life history data for Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins varies considerably depending on the population they belong to. Little information is known for Australian animals, however, sexual maturity is probabaly reached at an age exceeding six years for males (1.5 m in length) and four years for females (1.4 m in length) in northern Australia (Ross 2006). Life expectancy in Australian waters is unknown, but elsewhere the maximum age for Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins has been estimated at 22 years (Perrin & Reilly 1984).

Natural predators include sharks and several other cetaceans, including Killer Whales, False Killer Whales, Pygmy Killer Whales and Short-finned Pilot Whales (Bannister et al. 1996; Leatherwood & Reeves 1983). High levels of mercury are recorded in Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins (natural contamination) and DDT, Dieldrin and PCBs have been recorded in waters outside Australia (Ross 2006). Parasitism, which affects hearing, is believed to be a major factor in the natural mortality of this dolphin (Bannister et al. 1996; Perrin 1998).

The overview of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin reproductive parameters presented here is based primarily on non-Australian information (Ross 2006). Calves are born at 0.7–0.8 m in length, and wean between one and three years. The interval between calves is between two and three years, depending on calf survivorship, but is more rapid in depleted populations. Gestation ranges from 9–11 months, but no mating and calving seasons are known. Similarly, no calving areas are known in Australian waters (Bannister et al. 1996; Peddemors 1999; Perrin & Gilpatrick 1994; Perrin & Reilly 1984; Ross 1984).

There are no known reproductive behaviours that may make Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins particularly vulnerable to a specific threatening process. However, a suspected calving interval of two to three years leads to a relatively slow reproductive capacity.

Over deep oceanic water, Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins feed on pelagic fish (mostly myctophids), squids and shrimps taken at depths greater than 250 m (Perrin 1998). In the eastern tropical Pacific, Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins undertake long-term movements in response to changing availability of prey (Perrin et al. 1979). Some of their fish prey are also hunted by tuna, leading Secchi and Siciliano (1995) to postulate that Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins in the south-western Atlantic may undergo similar displacement patterns and feeding behaviour as their Pacific counterparts.

In other parts of their range, Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins undergo food-related diurnal movements, heading offshore at dusk apparently to feed on deep-living organisms that migrate towards the surface at night (Norris et al. 1985). No stomach contents have been examined for the Great Barrier Reef animals but stomach contents of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins from northern Australia contained reef-living and benthic organisms including the following food items: leatherjackets (present in the stomachs of seven individuals); small eels, including Gymnothorax (in four individuals); ponyfish (three); an apogonid; teleost remains (three); sepiids (four) and squid beaks (two); shrimp/prawns (four) and an isopod (D. Hembree unpublished, in Ross 2006). Perrin (2002) suggested that the dwarf form from the Gulf of Thailand may be a bottom-feeder and that their small size is associated with such a habit.

Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin diet overlaps greatly with Yellowfin Tuna and a close association has been noted between these species and sea birds in the eastern tropical Pacific (Bannister et al. 1996). This association has led fishers in the eastern tropical Pacific to search tuna by targeting dolphin groups. The tuna fishers set their seine nets to targeting the tuna swimming below the dolphins and often take a number of dolphins as bycatch in the process. Although Spotted Dolphins are targeted more than Spinners, the practice has been a major threatening process in this region. It is likely that similar fishing practices (and resulting threatening processes) occur in other oceans where this association between the dolphins and tuna exists.

Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins are not known to be migratory, but observations in both the eastern tropical Pacific and southwest Atlantic Ocean indicate seasonal movement of animals and substantial extensions of range (Secchi & Siciliano 1995). These movements have been linked to changes in oceanographic features such as the warm Brazil Current. Similarly, the presence of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins in southern localities on the Australian west coast may be linked to movements of the Leeuwin Current (Bannister et al. 1996).

Observations of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins in the northern Great Barrier Reef indicate that they undertake regular (possibly daily) migrations from lagoonal areas at dusk, via particular channels, such as Cormorant Pass, to the open ocean (A. Dunstan and P. Arnold, pers. comm., cited in Ross 2006). These patterns suggest that human-induced mortalities through incidental bycatch on the open ocean would likely be restricted to night fishing activities.

Details of the home ranges used by Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins are not available for Australian populations, but in the eastern tropical Pacific a complex geographical pattern of variation in colour variants, in concert with limited information of tag returns, suggest home ranges with a diameter of hundreds, rather than thousands, of kilometres (Perrin et al. 1991).

Distinctiveness and detectability

The slender streamlined shape, with characteristic long slender snout, makes Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins readily identifiable at sea. They are vigorous swimmers, often leaping clear of the water and spinning on their longitudinal axis thereby enabling recognition through this distinctive behaviour. Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins will readily bow-ride vessels, except in the eastern tropical Pacific where they have learnt to avoid boats (Leatherwood & Reeves 1983).

Recommended methods

Cetacean surveys are constrained by several important factors including weather (e.g. sea state and light conditions), area to be covered, aim of the survey (abundance estimate versus ecological studies), the activities of the animals themselves (e.g. travelling, resting, surface versus deep feeding) and the type of craft used for the survey.

Surveys for pelagic dolphins have primarily been boat-based transects, although some aerial surveys have been conducted in the eastern tropical Pacific. There are almost no dedicated cetacean surveys conducted in Australian waters, but surveys associated with petro-chemical exploration may be used as platforms of opportunity. During such non-dedicated surveys, a minimum requirement is to record all cetacean sightings encountered with corresponding GPS position, environmental data (sea conditions and habitat) and behavioural observations. From fishing vessels, all incidentally caught animals should be recorded with corresponding GPS position, plus attempts should be made to obtain basic biological information from dead animals (V. Peddemors 2006, pers. comm.).

Historically, the main threats to populations of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins has included:

  • Incidental bycatch in the Taiwanese gill-net fishery in the Arafura and Timor Seas off northern Australia, between 1974–1986. An estimated 4900 Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins (comprising 35% of the total dolphin bycatch) were caught during this period (Harwood & Hembree 1987).
  • Directed fisheries and incidental catch have killed large numbers in Sri Lanka, the Philippines and the Solomon Islands, where they are hunted for human consumption (Dawbin 1966a; Reeves et al. 2003).
  • Bycatch in shrimp fisheries in the Gulf of Thailand (Perrin et al. 1989).
  • Occasional capture (low numbers) in inshore shark nets in Queensland.

Outside of Australia, the most significant impact has been as bycatch in the purse-seine netting in the eastern tropical Pacific. Current population numbers are believed to be well below original levels, having declined to about 58–72% (in the form known as 'Whitebelly Spinners') and 44% (in the form known as 'Eastern Spinners'), despite measures to curtail incidental take. Pre-catch numbers are thought to have been in the order of millions of animals (Bannister et al. 1996; Gerrodette & Wade 1991).

The current threats to the species include:

  • Direct catches occur in areas adjacent to Indonesia, Philippines and Solomon Islands.
  • Incidental bycatch in the Taiwanese gill-net fishery operating in the Arafura and Timor Seas just outside the Australian EEZ.
  • Possible illegal and incidental catches in northern Australian waters.
  • Incidental capture in pelagic gillnet fisheries off Sri Lanka.
  • Incidental catches in the Gulf of Thailand shrimp trawl fishery.
  • Ongoing incidental catches in the purse seine fisheries operating within the eastern tropical Pacific, albeit at greatly reduced numbers.

Other potential or future threats to the species may include:

  • Entanglement in drift-nets set outside Australian Territorial Waters and in lost or discarded netting.
  • Pollution (including increasing amounts of plastic debris at sea, oil spills and dumping of industrial wastes into waterways and the sea) leading to bio-accumulation of toxic substances in body tissues (Bannister et al. 1996).

Bannister and colleagues (1996) and Ross (2006) recommended the following actions be taken to better understand the threats to Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins:

  • Determine the distribution and monitor abundance of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins in Australian waters to assess the possible impact of threats, particularly the effect of direct and indirect fishing activities. This may be done via a sighting program to monitor numbers, particularly in northern waters.
  • Determine the taxonomic relationships within and outside the Indo-Pacific region, particularly that of the animals found in the Great Barrier Reef region, to assess the likely impact of threats on possible individual populations of Long-snouted Spinner Dolphins.
  • Obtain information on Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin diet to determine their trophic level and assess any possible impact of the fishing industry on dolphin food resources.
  • Obtain basic biological information (including diet and pollutant levels) from incidentally-caught and stranded Long-snouted Spinner Dolphin specimens, especially from northern Australia. This should include ensuring specimens are made available to appropriate scientific museums to enable collection of life history data and tissue samples for genetic analysis

Current projects initiated to address these threats include:

  • A study of incidental catch in Arafura and Timor seas, 1981-1985, by the Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service.
  • Surveys of the Queensland coast by researchers at the James Cook University and the University of Sydney.
  • Conduct disentanglement workshops, which may be particularly relevant for offshore fishers, and develop suitable action plans.

Additionally, there is now a requirement to report all incidental catches made within the Australian EEZ (Bannister et al. 1996).

The impact of the gillnet fishery on this species in the Arafura and Timor Seas is likely to have eased, as available information indicates that such activities have all but ceased in that region (Ross 2006).

Marine bioregional plans have been developed for four of Australia's marine regions - South-west, North-west, North and Temperate East. Marine Bioregional Plans will help improve the way decisions are made under the EPBC Act, particularly in relation to the protection of marine biodiversity and the sustainable use of our oceans and their resources by our marine-based industries. Marine Bioregional Plans improve our understanding of Australia's oceans by presenting a consolidated picture of the biophysical characteristics and diversity of marine life. They describe the marine environment and conservation values of each marine region, set out broad biodiversity objectives, identify regional priorities and outline strategies and actions to address these priorities. Click here for more information about marine bioregional plans.

The spinner dolphin has been identified as a conservation value in the North-west (DSEWPaC 2012y) Marine Region. The "species group report card - cetaceans" for the North-west (DSEWPaC 2012y) Marine Region provides additional information.

The Action Plan for Australian Cetaceans (Bannister et al. 1996) and the Review of the Conservation Status of Australia's Smaller Whales and Dolphins (Ross 2006) provide brief biological overviews and management recommendations of this species. In addition, Australian National Guidelines for Whale and Dolphin Watching (2005c) have been published.

The following table lists known and perceived threats to this species. Threats are based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) threat classification version 1.1.

Threat Class Threatening Species References
Biological Resource Use:Fishing and Harvesting Aquatic Resources:Illegal take
Biological Resource Use:Fishing and Harvesting Aquatic Resources:Mortality due to capture, entanglement/drowning in nets and fishing lines
Biological Resource Use:Fishing and Harvesting Aquatic Resources:Overfishing, competition with fishing operations and overfishing of prey fishing
Pollution:Garbage and Solid Waste:Ingestion and entanglement with marine debris
Pollution:Industrial and Military Effluents:Dumping of industrial waste
Pollution:Pollution:Pollution due to oil spills and other chemical pollutants

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Bannister, J.L., C.M. Kemper & R.M. Warneke (1996). The Action Plan for Australian Cetaceans. [Online]. Canberra: Australian Nature Conservation Agency. Available from:

Dawbin, W.H. (1966a). Porpoises and porpoise hunting in Malaita. Australian Natural History. 15:207-211.

Department of the Environment and Heritage (2005e). Australian National Guidelines for Whale and Dolphin Watching. [Online]. Available from:

Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) (2008). The North Marine Bioregional Plan: Bioregional Profile: A Description of the Ecosystems, Conservation Values and Uses of the North Marine Region. [Online]. Canberra: DEWHA. Available from:

Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) (2008a). The South-West Marine Bioregional Plan: Bioregional Profile: A Description of the Ecosystems, Conservation Values and Uses of the South-West Marine Region. [Online]. Canberra: DEWHA. Available from:

Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) (2008b). North-West Marine Bioregional Plan: Bioregional Profile: A Description of the Ecosystems, Conservation Values and Uses of the North-West Marine Region. [Online]. Canberra: DEWHA. Available from:

Gerrodette T, P.R.Wade (1991). Monitoring trends in dolphin abundance in the eastern tropical Pacific: Analysis of 1989 data. Report of the International Whaling Commission. 41:511-515.

Harwood, M.B. & D. Hembree (1987). Incidental catch of small cetaceans in the offshore gill-net fishery in Northern Australian Waters: 1981-1985. Report of the International Whaling Commission. 37:363-367.

Jefferson, T.A., S. Leatherwood & M.A. Webber (1993). FAO species identification guide. Marine Mammals of the World. [Online]. Rome: United Nations Environment Programme, Food and Agricultural Organization. Available from: [Accessed: 15-Aug-2007].

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Leatherwood, S. & R.R. Reeves (1983). The Sierra Club Handbook of Whales and Dolphins. San Francisco: Sierra Club Books.

Marsh, H. (1990). The Distribution and Abundance of Cetaceans in the Great Barrier Reef Region with Notes on Whale Sharks. Report to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.

National Cetacean Sightings Programme (2007). Whale and Dolphin Sightings Report. Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA).

Norris, K.S., B. Wursig, R.S. Wells, M. Wursig, S.M. Brownlee, C. Johnson & J. Solow (1985). The behaviour of the Hawaiian spinner dolphin, Stenella longirostris. Southwest Fisheries Center Administrative Report LJ-85-06C. Page(s) 213.

Peddemors, V.M. (1999). Delphinids of southern Africa: a review of their distribution, status and life history. Journal of Cetacean Research. 1(2):157-165.

Peddemors, V.M. (2006). Personal Communications. Sydney: Graduate School of the Environment, Macquarie University.

Peddemors, V.M. & R. Harcourt (2006). Personal Communication. Sydney: Graduate School of the Environment, Macquarie University.

Perrin, W.F. (1990). Subspecies of Stenella longirostris (Mammalia: Cetacea: Delphinidae). Proceedings Of The Biological Society Of Washington. 103(2):453- 463.

Perrin, W.F. (2002). Spinner Dolphin. In: Perrin W.F., B. W┐rsig and J.G.M. Thewissen, eds. Encyclopedia of Marine Mammals. Page(s) 1174-1178. Academic Press: San Diego.

Perrin, W.F. & S.B. Reilly (1984). Reproductive parameters of dolphins and small whales of the family Delphinidae. Reports of the International Whaling Commission (Special Issue 6). Page(s) 97-133.

Perrin, W.F., M.L.L. Dolar & D. Robineau (1999). Spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris) of the western Pacific and Southeast Asia: pelagic and shallow-water forms. Marine Mammal Science. 15(4):1029-1053.

Perrin, W.F., N. Miyazaki & T. Kasuya (1989). A dwarf form of the Spinner Dolphin (Stenella longirostris) from Thailand. Marine Mammal Science. 5:213-227.

Perrin, W.F., P.A. Akin & J.V. Kashiwada (1991). Geographic variation in external morphology of the spinner dolphin Stenella longirostris in the Eastern Pacific and implications for conservation. Fishery Bulletin, U.S. 89:411-428.

Perrin, W.F., W.E. Evans & D.B. Holts (1979). Movements of pelagic dolphins (Stenella spp.) in the eastern tropical Pacific as indicated by results of tagging with summary of tagging operations. NOAA Technical Report SSRF-737 National Marine Fisheries Service.

Perrin, William E. (1998). Stenella longirostris. Mammalian Species. 599:1-7. [Online]. Available from:

Reeves, R.R., B.D. Smith, E.A. Crespo & G. Notarbartolo di Sciara (2003). Dolphins, Whales and Porpoises: 2002-2010 Conservation Action Plan for the World's Cetaceans. Page(s) 139. IUCN/SSC Cetacean Specialist Group.

Reilly, S.B. (1990). Seasonal changes in distribution and habitat differences among dolphins in the eastern tropical Pacific. Marine Ecology Progress Series. 66:1-11.

Rice, D.W. (1998). Marine mammals of the world. Systematics and distribution. Special publication number 4. Kansas: Society for Marine Mammalogy.

Ross, G.J.B. (1984). The smaller cetaceans of the south-east coast of southern Africa. Annals of the Cape Provincial Museums (Natural History). 15:173-411.

Ross, G.J.B. (2006). Review of the Conservation Status of Australia's Smaller Whales and Dolphins. Page(s) 124. [Online]. Report to the Australian Department of the Environment and Heritage, Canberra. Available from:

Secchi, E.R. & S. Siciliano (1995). Comments on the southern range of the spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris) in the Western South Atlantic. Aquatic Mammals. 21(2):105-108.

Wade P. & T.Gerrodette (1993). Estimates of cetacean abundance and distribution in the eastern tropical Pacific. Report of the International Whaling Commission. 43:477-493.

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This database is designed to provide statutory, biological and ecological information on species and ecological communities, migratory species, marine species, and species and species products subject to international trade and commercial use protected under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act). It has been compiled from a range of sources including listing advice, recovery plans, published literature and individual experts. While reasonable efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, no guarantee is given, nor responsibility taken, by the Commonwealth for its accuracy, currency or completeness. The Commonwealth does not accept any responsibility for any loss or damage that may be occasioned directly or indirectly through the use of, or reliance on, the information contained in this database. The information contained in this database does not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth. This database is not intended to be a complete source of information on the matters it deals with. Individuals and organisations should consider all the available information, including that available from other sources, in deciding whether there is a need to make a referral or apply for a permit or exemption under the EPBC Act.

Citation: Department of the Environment (2014). Stenella longirostris in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: Accessed Fri, 19 Sep 2014 19:00:59 +1000.