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The Amazon river dolphin, otherwise known as the boto, or pink river dolphin (Inia geoffrensis), the only New World river dolphin, is probably the best known of the five river dolphins. It has an extremely distinctive shape with a long, plump body, paddle-shaped fins and a ridge along the back rather than a dorsal fin. The head consists of a bulging forehead (known as the 'melon'), small eyes, chubby cheeks and an extremely long beak, which may hold up to 140 teeth. Probably the most striking feature of the Amazon river dolphin, however, is its colour, which varies from bluish grey to white, and even pink. Amazon river dolphins have extremely flexible necks, as some of the vertebrae are unfused; they are able to move their head in most directions. Local people have often regarded the Amazon river dolphin with suspicion and there are a number of myths surrounding the species, such as one in which dolphins turn into handsome men in order to seduce young girls.




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