The mammals that have the most teeth are dolphins. An oceanic dolphin may have up to 260 teeth on average. Each tooth is cone-shaped and approximately 0.4 inches (1 cm) in diameter. Dolphins’ teeth are evenly spaced apart and designed to interlock, which allows them to trap prey, a variety of smaller fish, in their mouths and swallow them without the need for chewing. Unlike other large sea creatures such as sharks, that have a lot of teeth, dolphins only have one set of teeth in their lifetimes. If a dolphin loses a tooth, it does not grow back, just like with human teeth.
More about dolphins:
- In the Solomon Islands, dolphin teeth are used as currency. In 2008, the spinner dolphin tooth was worth roughly the equivalent of 0.26 US Dollars (USD).
- An adult dolphin will typically eat nearly 10% of its body weight in fish, which includes mackerel, herring, and squid each day.
- Dolphins never physically fall asleep because they would drown since they don’t automatically breathe like humans. Instead, dolphins shut down half their brains at a time to rest them.