Dolphin F159


Name: F159, also known as Aya

Sex: Female

Age: Born 1996

A Dolphin’s Life

Aya is a fourth generation Sarasota Bay dolphin. Her lineage is a sixth-generation maternal lineage that we know from our population studies.

Granny (FB19) is the oldest dolphin in this lineage. She gave birth to Genie (FB59, who was named after famous shark scientist Dr. Eugenie Clark); Genie gave birth to Claire (F131); and Claire gave birth to Aya.

Aya has given birth to four calves of her own, including calf 1594 (pictured with her below), which was born in 2015 and F233, who was born in 2010.

Knowing this family lineage is a wonderful example showing dolphins’ long-term residency in Sarasota Bay and offers us another reminder that we’re sharing these coastal waters with animals that call these places home. Please watch out for wildlife!

A Dolphin’s Voice

A Special Note About the Audio Recording

In collaboration with numerous colleagues over the past 35 years, our dolphin communication research team has collected thousands of hours of acoustic recordings from members of the resident Sarasota bottlenose dolphin community, with a focus on individually distinctive signature whistles. Recordings have been made during periodic health assessments, when we are able to obtain high-quality recordings of known individual dolphins. We are currently in the process of systematically assembling a verified signature whistle catalog, with multiple samples from each of the approximately 1,000 unique recording sessions of almost 300 individual dolphins. Members of this collaborative team, and our student researchers, come from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the University of North Carolina Wilmington, University of St. Andrews, and Hampshire College. Learn more about dolphin communication.

Aya with her fourth calf, 1594, in 2016