Australian research engineers have gathered footage from cameras mounted on wild dolphins off the coast New Zealand.

University of Sydney researchers Peter Jones developed a set of custom-made cameras to be placed on dolphins using suction cups.

The team has now gathered 10 hours of footage from between December and January this year, showing rare behaviours of dolphins in the wild.

The devices were designed to detach from the mammals after a set period of time, allowing researchers to retrieve them.

Researcher Dr Gabriel Machovsky-Capuska from the University of Sydney said there was plenty to learn from watching wild dolphins.

“We try to understand some social patterns,” Dr Machovsky-Capuska said.

“Behaviours between mother and calf. Behaviours between the individual and the group.”

Dr Machovsky-Capuska said marine predators like dolphins give many vital clues about ocean health through their feeding and migrations practices.

The same team is now tweaking the technology to develop “shark cams” to monitor shark behaviour off the New South Wales coast.