Māui dolphins - adult and juvenile
Image: Māui dolphin | DOC


Māui dolphin is a subspecies of Hector’s dolphin, the world’s smallest dolphin. It is one of the rarest dolphins in the world, and can only be found on the West Coast of the North Island.


Population: Between 57-75 over the age of 1 year.
New Zealand status: Endemic
Conservation status: Nationally critical
Found in: West coast of the North Island from Maunganui Bluff to Whanganui
Threats: Fishing, disease, oil and gas exploration, boat strike, mining, tourism, noise

Report sightings

If you are in the North Island and think you’ve seen a Māui or Hector’s dolphin, report it straight away to our emergency hotline 0800 DOC HOT (0800 362 468).


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