The Common Bottlenose dolphin is the most commonly recognized dolphin as this species is found in aquariums and oceanariums worldwide. This is a coastal species in many regions of the world but in Hawaii bottlenose dolphins are typically found further from shore and may be either part of a Main Hawaiian Islands population or resident to specific island groupings.
The general population that travels among the Main Hawaiian islands is by far the largest population in Hawaii, estimated at almost 6000 animals. There are approximately 150 individuals comprising a Kauai/Niihau population and another 150 individuals believed to be resident to the island of Oahu.
There are almost 200 individuals estimated in the resident population that travels between Maui and Lanai and 130 animals off of the Big island of Hawaii. The scientific name, Tursiops truncatus, refers to their characteristically flattened teeth. These animals dive to depths up to 500m (1,600 feet) hunting for fish and squid.