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40 Dolphin Quotes Celebrating The Beaming Mammals

When you hear whistles in the ocean, be prepared to encounter lively, graceful, and intelligent dolphins. With 36 species in every water, most abundant in the Atlantic Ocean, we can spot one easily by looking out for splashes, feeding birds, and peeking dorsal fins. I even remembered a pod of dolphins swimming with us when I was young as we cruised from one island to another in a small boat.

From their powerful presence in the wild to their intellect, our deep emotional bond with them, and their significance in literature and conservation, these dolphin quotes will undoubtedly ignite a newfound appreciation for these exceptional animals.

Best Dolphin Quotes About The Mammal Swimming In The Wild

Dolphins gliding through the ocean create a magical scene, their streamlined bodies slicing the waves gracefully. Not only do dolphins swim elegantly, but they also foster deep connections with one another. As social animals, they form unbreakable bonds within their pods, cooperating to hunt or protect each other from predators. A 2018 research study revealed how dolphins coordinate with each other to solve cooperative tasks2.

And as everyone knows, they are aquatic mammals like whales and sea otters. Since they need to resurface to breathe, they practice unihemispheric sleep, resting half their brain at a time. Cool, right?

Uncover more discoveries as you read the following dolphin quotes below. And for more from the blue depths they call home, check out our ocean facts and the different types of sharks.

"Dolphins are social mammals, capable of enjoying their lives. They form close bonds with other members of their group." -Peter Singer #trvst #quotes #beinspired #socialimpact #dolphin

"Dolphins are social mammals, capable of enjoying their lives. They form close bonds with other members of their group."
- Peter Singer

"Among the sea-fishes many stories are told about the dolphin, indicative of his gentle and kindly nature. It appears to be the fleetest of all animals, marine and terrestrial, and it can leap over the masts of large vessels." -Aristotle #trvst #quotes #thinkgreen #socialchange #dolphin #nature

"Among the sea-fishes many stories are told about the dolphin, indicative of his gentle and kindly nature. It appears to be the fleetest of all animals, marine and terrestrial, and it can leap over the masts of large vessels."
- Aristotle

"We do well to remember dolphins. If a dolphin fails, then others come alongside and nudge him gently through the waters; because a dolphin must keep moving in order to keep breathing. We all need our dolphins alongside us from time to time." -Frank Delaney #trvst #quotes #planetearthfirst #thinkgreen #dolphin

"We do well to remember dolphins. If a dolphin fails, then others come alongside and nudge him gently through the waters; because a dolphin must keep moving in order to keep breathing. We all need our dolphins alongside us from time to time."
- Frank Delaney

"Dolphins are not automatic air-breathers like we are. Every breath is a conscious effort. If life becomes too unbearable, the dolphins just take a breath and they sink to the bottom. They don't take the next breath." -Ric O'Barry #trvst #quotes #changetheworld #takeaction #dolphin #life

"Dolphins are not automatic air-breathers like we are. Every breath is a conscious effort. If life becomes too unbearable, the dolphins just take a breath and they sink to the bottom. They don't take the next breath."
- Ric O'Barry

Quotes About Dolphin Intelligence For The Curious Mind

Experts believe dolphins are among the most intelligent animals, boasting a brain-to-body weight ratio second to humans. Even if their brain structures differ from ours and the great apes, these marine mammals excel in higher-order thinking skills such as problem-solving, self-awareness, and empathy. Witnessing how dolphins interact with their surroundings and each other offers us a glimpse into their advanced cognitive abilities. 

Like great apes, dolphins also use tools like sponges to protect their snouts or probe the sand for fish. They also trap their prey inside shells and shake them on the surface until they fall out. These behaviors are transmitted not only between mother and calf but also throughout the pod1, revealing how culture can form among nonhumans.

Check out how impressed by the creatures the great minds below are through their dolphin quotes.

"There's no question dolphins are smarter than humans as they play more." -Albert Einstein #trvst #quotes #socialchange #collectiveaction #dolphin

"There's no question dolphins are smarter than humans as they play more."
- Albert Einstein

"Ducks are sweet, crows are intelligent, but I prefer dolphins because they are both sweet and intelligent." -Mehmet Murat İldan #trvst #quotes #changetheworld #gogreen #dolphin

"Ducks are sweet, crows are intelligent, but I prefer dolphins because they are both sweet and intelligent."
- Mehmet Murat İldan

"I invite you to entertain some new beliefs about dolphins that these Cetacea with huge brains are more intelligent than any man or woman." -John C. Lilly #trvst #quotes #gogreen #takeaction #dolphin

"I invite you to entertain some new beliefs about dolphins that these Cetacea with huge brains are more intelligent than any man or woman."
- John C. Lilly

"Yeah, dolphins and monkeys basically could play chess together. Those are brilliant animals." -Perry DeAngelis #trvst #quotes #collectiveaction #thinkgreen #dolphin #brilliant

"Yeah, dolphins and monkeys basically could play chess together. Those are brilliant animals."
- Perry DeAngelis

"It is of interest to note that while some dolphins are reported to have learned English — up to 50 words used in correct context, no human being has been reported to have learned dolphinese." -Carl Sagan #trvst #quotes #dogood #bethechange #dolphin #human

"It is of interest to note that while some dolphins are reported to have learned English — up to 50 words used in correct context, no human being has been reported to have learned dolphinese."
- Carl Sagan

"The voice of the dolphin in air is like that of the human, in that they can pronounce vowels and combinations of vowels." -Aristotle #trvst #quotes #changetheworld #ecoconscious #dolphin #human

"The voice of the dolphin in air is like that of the human, in that they can pronounce vowels and combinations of vowels."
- Aristotle

Heartwarming Dolphin Quotes About Our Connection With Them

We have admired dolphins throughout history for their seemingly selfless actions, such as saving humans from drowning or shielding them from predators. Jacques Cousteau, the famous oceanographer, once said, "The happiness of the bee and the dolphin is to exist. For man, it is to know that and to wonder at it."

By helping and interacting with humans, dolphins have earned the reputation of guardians or guides, making our connection with them even more profound.

Read the following heartwarming dolphin quotes from authors and singers that illustrate our shared affinity with these magnificent beings.

"Out at sea for a year, floating free from all fear. Every day blowin’ spray, in a dolphin’s smile." -The Byrds #trvst #quotes #changetheworld #beinspired #dolphin #free

"Out at sea for a year, floating free from all fear. Every day blowin’ spray, in a dolphin’s smile."
- The Byrds

"I felt such a deep connection with dolphins. I felt like they were the only ones who understood me." -Lykke Li #trvst #quotes #planetearthfirst #beinspired #dolphin

"I felt such a deep connection with dolphins. I felt like they were the only ones who understood me."
- Lykke Li

"Dolphins are sunflowers of the water. They adore the Sun, they love the ocean and are kind to the land. They remind us to stay playful, keep our inner child safe and stand by loved ones." -Reena Doss #trvst #quotes #dogood #changetheworld #dolphin #adore #love #water #ocean

"Dolphins are sunflowers of the water. They adore the Sun, they love the ocean and are kind to the land. They remind us to stay playful, keep our inner child safe and stand by loved ones."
- Reena Doss

"A dolphin's smile is the greatest deception. It creates the illusion that they're always happy." -Ric O'Barry #trvst #quotes #socialchange #ecoconscious #dolphin #love #harmony #peace #power

"A dolphin's smile is the greatest deception. It creates the illusion that they're always happy."
- Ric O'Barry

"Dolphin can lead us to an understanding of how to live in harmony with the twin needs of individuality and cooperation. Dolphin carries balance, peace, joy, compassion, love, and power." -Loren Cruden #trvst #quotes #changetheworld #planetearthfirst #dolphin #happy

"Dolphin can lead us to an understanding of how to live in harmony with the twin needs of individuality and cooperation. Dolphin carries balance, peace, joy, compassion, love, and power."
- Loren Cruden

"The happiness of the bee and the dolphin is to exist. For man it is to know that and to wonder at it." -Jacques Yves Cousteau #trvst #quotes #beinspired #bethechange #dolphin #happiness

"The happiness of the bee and the dolphin is to exist. For man it is to know that and to wonder at it."
- Jacques Yves Cousteau

Funny Dolphin Quotes To Make You Smile

The universe must have given dolphins their perpetual grins to go with their playful nature. And in turn, we are also eternally drawn to them. Aside from displaying intelligence, dolphins play and exhibit a sense of humor by teasing and even pulling pranks on people, which only adds to their charm. They also like surfing waves, leaping out of the water, and tossing seaweed.

The dolphin quotes below will undoubtedly capture the essence of dolphins' playfulness, causing you to chuckle as you envision their entertaining behaviors.

"Dolphins and sharks are natural enemies. Dolphins are like, 'Quit eating us,' and sharks are like, 'Stop smiling all the time, you morons.'" -Dan Florence #trvst #quotes #takeaction #gogreen #dolphin #natural

"Dolphins and sharks are natural enemies. Dolphins are like, 'Quit eating us,' and sharks are like, 'Stop smiling all the time, you morons.'"
- Dan Florence

"Humans think they are smarter than dolphins because we build cars and buildings and star wars etc., and all that dolphins do is swim in the water, eat fish, and play around. Dolphins believe that they are smarter for exactly the same reasons." -Douglas Adams #trvst #quotes #planetearthfirst #bethechange #dolphin #fish #water

"Humans think they are smarter than dolphins because we build cars and buildings and star wars etc., and all that dolphins do is swim in the water, eat fish, and play around. Dolphins believe that they are smarter for exactly the same reasons."
- Douglas Adams

"How did the dolphins and whales get such big brains? They obviously don't need such big brains to catch fish." -Owsley Stanley #trvst #quotes #socialchange #gogreen #dolphin #fish

"How did the dolphins and whales get such big brains? They obviously don't need such big brains to catch fish."
- Owsley Stanley

"I pitched the idea that SpongeBob and Patrick learn a swearword. Everyone said no. I couldn't even use a bleep. So I used a dolphin sound instead." -Stephen Hillenburg #trvst #quotes #ecoconscious #socialchange #dolphin

"I pitched the idea that SpongeBob and Patrick learn a swearword. Everyone said no. I couldn't even use a bleep. So I used a dolphin sound instead."
- Stephen Hillenburg

"Dolphins: animals that are so intelligent that, within a few weeks of captivity, they can train a man to stand on the edge of their pool and throw them food three times a day." -Hal Roach #trvst #quotes #planetearthfirst #impact #dolphin #food

"Dolphins: animals that are so intelligent that, within a few weeks of captivity, they can train a man to stand on the edge of their pool and throw them food three times a day."
- Hal Roach

Keep calm and love dolphins.

~ Anonymous

This girl loves dolphins.

~ Anonymous

Metaphorical Dolphin Quotes To Ponder About

Idiomatic expressions involving dolphins, such as "swimming with dolphins" or "dancing with dolphins," piqued our interest. These phrases often suggest harmony, reflecting the deep human-dolphin bond.

In addition, ancient cultures revered dolphins for their grace, intelligence, and agility, often seeing them as symbols of guidance, protection, and even divine intervention. For example, in Greek mythology and Chinese beliefs, the creatures represent a savior and a good sign for ocean travelers. 

As you read the dolphin quotes below, make your own interpretations and integrate them into your conservation.

"Imagine a dolphin dancing in the sky. Let it dance with joy. Think of yourself at the bottom of the ocean watching." -Yoko Ono #trvst #quotes #gogreen #ecoconscious #dolphin #dance #ocean

"Imagine a dolphin dancing in the sky. Let it dance with joy. Think of yourself at the bottom of the ocean watching."
- Yoko Ono

"When a dolphin swims into your life, then it's time to add plenty of joy and playfulness into whatever you do." -Millie Gemondo #trvst #quotes #socialimpact #collectiveaction #dolphin #life

"When a dolphin swims into your life, then it's time to add plenty of joy and playfulness into whatever you do."
- Millie Gemondo

"Like a dolphin which is happy even in the middle of giant waves and horrible storms, a wise man is also happy even in the middle of a chaotic world." -Mehmet Murat İldan #trvst #quotes #impact #gogreen #dolphin #world #happy

"Like a dolphin which is happy even in the middle of giant waves and horrible storms, a wise man is also happy even in the middle of a chaotic world."
- Mehmet Murat İldan

"I’m not just smart. I’m dolphin smart." -Unknown #trvst #quotes #thinkgreen #planetearthfirst #dolphin

"I’m not just smart. I’m dolphin smart."
- Unknown

"If dolphins swim toward Hilo, the sea will be calm; if the dolphins swim toward Ka’u, the ocean will be rough." -Tahitian proverb #trvst #quotes #socialimpact #socialchange #dolphin #ocean

"If dolphins swim toward Hilo, the sea will be calm; if the dolphins swim toward Ka’u, the ocean will be rough."
- Tahitian proverb

"Dolphins may well be carrying information as well as functions critical to the regeneration of life upon our planet." -R. Buckminster Fuller #trvst #quotes #dogood #impact #dolphin #life #planet

"Dolphins may well be carrying information as well as functions critical to the regeneration of life upon our planet."
- R. Buckminster Fuller

Dolphins are considered a powerful spirit animal and are associated with harmony, playfulness, and freedom.

~ Anthon St. Maarten

Noteworthy Dolphin Quotes From Literature

Dolphins have long captivated the human imagination, leaving a lasting impression within literature. For instance, ancient Greek poets like Pindar wove enchanting tales involving the Greek god Dionysus and dolphins. 

We can also find a more contemporary example in Scott O'Dell's classic novel, "Island of the Blue Dolphins." In this riveting tale, dolphins symbolize good fortune and companionship for the protagonist, Karana. The vivid imagery of dolphins swimming alongside her as she navigates life on a remote island reminds us of their role as guiding spirits and protectors. 

Check how the graceful mammals steal the spotlight in other literary works through the dolphin quotes below.

"The singing of flutes gently animates the dolphin, in the depths of the waveless sea." -Pindar #trvst #quotes #impact #ecoconscious #dolphin

"The singing of flutes gently animates the dolphin, in the depths of the waveless sea."
- Pindar

"To the dolphin alone, beyond all other, nature has granted what the best philosophers seek: friendship for no advantage." -Plutarch #trvst #quotes #collectiveaction #socialimpact #dolphin #nature

"To the dolphin alone, beyond all other, nature has granted what the best philosophers seek: friendship for no advantage."
- Plutarch

"A pair of dolphins swept by us in the water, flicking their heads out to get a look at us as they went. One of them made a chattering sound that wasn’t very melodic. The other twitched its tail and splashed a little water our way, all in good fun." -Jim Butcher #trvst #quotes #socialchange #thinkgreen #dolphin #water

"A pair of dolphins swept by us in the water, flicking their heads out to get a look at us as they went. One of them made a chattering sound that wasn’t very melodic. The other twitched its tail and splashed a little water our way, all in good fun."
- Jim Butcher

"Hope that you may understand! What can books of men that wive In a dragon-guarded land, Paintings of the dolphin-drawn Sea-nymphs in their pearly waggons Do, but awake a hope to live That had gone With the dragons?" -W.B. Yeats #trvst #quotes #ecoconscious #planetearthfirst #dolphin #books

"Hope that you may understand!
What can books of men that wive
In a dragon-guarded land,
Paintings of the dolphin-drawn
Sea-nymphs in their pearly waggons
Do, but awake a hope to live
That had gone
With the dragons?"
- W.B. Yeats

"The vast blue ocean is waiting for her, and this is only the beginning of her story." -Gill Lewis, 'One White Dolphin' #trvst #quotes #gogreen #takeaction #dolphin #ocean

"The vast blue ocean is waiting for her, and this is only the beginning of her story."
- Gill Lewis, 'One White Dolphin'

"More than anything, it was the blue dolphins that took me back home." -Scott O’Dell #trvst #quotes #bethechange #collectiveaction #dolphin

"More than anything, it was the blue dolphins that took me back home."
- Scott O’Dell

See them play in the moonlight
Watch them dance in the sun
They're the children of freedom--everyone
As they care for each other
With no question or cause
They deserve to be treasured as a source of love

~ Olivia Newton John - The Promise (The Dolphin Song)

I wish you could swim, Like the dolphins, like dolphins can swim.

~ David Bowie

I break up through the skin of awareness a thousand times a day, as dolphins burst through seas, and dive again, and rise, and dive.

~ Annie Dillard

Quotes About Dolphin Conservation And The Importance Of Protecting Them

Dolphin conservation plays a significant role in maintaining the balance of our marine ecosystems. As top predators, dolphins are a barometer for the ocean's health. Their presence indicates a thriving environment rich in biodiversity. However, these majestic creatures face a growing threat due to unsustainable fishing practices, pollution, and habitat loss. 

Furthermore, The plight of dolphins in captivity is another pressing issue that demands attention. According to World Animal Protection, there are around 3,000 dolphins in entertainment venues worldwide. 

Unfortunately, these intelligent animals' physical and emotional well-being is often compromised when confined to aquariums and zoos. Limited space, unnatural social structures, and inadequate stimulation can lead to stress and physical injuries.

Let's maintain our deep connection with these animals by conserving their population and appreciating their beauty from afar. May these quotes shed light on this matter.

"No aquarium, no tank in Marine Land, however spacious it may be, can begin to duplicate the conditions of the sea. And no dolphin who inhabits one of those aquariums or one of those marine lands can be considered normal." -Jacques Yves Cousteau #trvst #quotes #collectiveaction #beinspired #dolphin

"No aquarium, no tank in Marine Land, however spacious it may be, can begin to duplicate the conditions of the sea. And no dolphin who inhabits one of those aquariums or one of those marine lands can be considered normal."
- Jacques Yves Cousteau

"There’s about as much educational benefit studying dolphins in captivity as there would be studying mankind by only observing prisoners held in solitary." -Jacques Yves Cousteau #trvst #quotes #beinspired #socialchange #dolphin

"There’s about as much educational benefit studying dolphins in captivity as there would be studying mankind by only observing prisoners held in solitary."
- Jacques Yves Cousteau

1

Sonja Wild, William J.E. Hoppitt, Simon J. Allen, Michael Krützen, Integrating Genetic, Environmental, and Social Networks to Reveal Transmission Pathways of a Dolphin Foraging Innovation, Current Biology, Volume 30, Issue 15, 2020, Pages 3024-3030.e4, ISSN 0960-9822.

2

Jaakkola Kelly, Guarino Emily, Donegan Katy and King Stephanie L. 2018. Bottlenose dolphins can understand their partner's role in a cooperative task. Proc. R. Soc. B.2852018094820180948

By Isabela Sedano, BEng.

Isabela is a determined millennial passionate about continuously seeking out ways to make an impact. With a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering with honors, Isabela’s research expertise and interest in artistic works, coupled with a creative mindset, offers readers a fresh take on different environmental, social, and personal development topics.

Photo by Shelby Cohron on Unsplash
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