Fun Fact Friday – How does a Dolphin sleep?

Have you ever seen a Dolphin?  Well aren’t you lucky! These sociable mammals regularly come up to the surface for oxygen, making them quite easy to spot. All that swimming around can prove to be quite exhausting, so ever wondered how dolphins catch a peaceful forty winks without drowning?

That was our inspiration behind this week’s Fun Fact Friday, and we jumped straight into the deep end (excuse the pun) with finding out all there is to know.

Firstly, dolphins choose to come up to the surface to open their blow-hole, instead of it being a regular automatic activity, like a human’s breathing.

Secondly, when dolphins are not playing with their friends, they are catching some much needed rest, but instead of sleeping for long periods of times like other mammals, they take 15 to 20 minute long naps throughout the day.

But the interesting part is that they don’t switch off all of their brains, instead only resting one side at a time, meaning that the other side remains active. They also keep the opposite eye open to look out for trouble, and for swimming to the surface.

Dolphin resting

Unfortunately no dolphins were available to be interviewed to find out just how this feel, but according to scientists it can feel like meditating or daydreaming.

So there you have it, dolphins quite literally sleep with one eye open!

What do you think?

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