Dolphin die-off: How big is the iceberg?
Not surprisingly, the discovery rate varies by species, depending on such factors as habitat preference, physical size, and the sociality of the animals. Your odds of finding a dead sperm whale are slightly better than average (about one body for every thirty deaths), of finding an offshore striped or spinner dolphin are far worse (less than one in 200). The paper doesn’t assign a number to bottlenose dolphins, no doubt because oftheir complicated demographics in the northern Gulf. But presumably nearshore dolphins would have one of the best rates of discovery (the highest rate given in the paper is about one in sixteen), and offshore dolphins perhaps among the worst, with dolphins on the shelf lying somewhere in the middle.