Although we did not come off the boat with much MVA1 video footage, we were able to confirm that White Blotch (#29) is indeed pregnant! This is a good sign as we believe she lost her one year old calf last year. By the looks of things, she may give birth before the summer is through. In 2001, when she had her last calf, she was kind enough to come by the boat to show DCP researchers her 10 day old baby. We would love for the same thing to happen this year and are hoping for the best this time around.
The rest of the dolphins were in a very large group (~25-30) and were feeding. They were divided between 3 subgroups and were observed throwing fish at the surface. One of the young dolphins was seen porpoising across the surface of the water, first in hot pursuit of a flying fish that got away, and then a small herring that was not so lucky.
Tonight we will be packing up our things, including the MVA1, before heading to Nassau tomorrow. There we will be collecting preliminary data (acoustic and video) at the captive facility, Dolphin Encounters. We are looking forward to this experience, as it will be our first time working with captive bottlenose dolphins. We’ll update you from there!
-Kathy, Kelly and Darcie