Lots of Data, even with iffy weather conditions.
We ran the weather spectrum (so to speak) for this trip to observe and record the behavior and signal exchange of Atlantic spotted dolphins. We had flat calm, glassy seas with little current to swells of 3-5 feet with a chop and 30 mph winds. But, we still gathered a good amount of data! We had 36 sightings total – 34 of which were dolphins and 2 were turtle and shark sightings. 24 sightings were of spotted dolphins and 10 were bottlenose dolphins. The turtles were green and hawksbill and the sharks were tiger, hammerhead and nurse. We had 9 encounters for a total of 91 minutes under water with dolphins. The length of encounters ranged from 4 to 23 minutes with a median of 8 minutes and an average length of 9 minutes. We saw several adult spotted dolphin females either pregnant of with young calves. The identifications in the field include: #115 (leftpec), #61 (remorakid) with calf, #45, #60 (Sadie, pregnant) and #93 (Rebecca) with calf. It was great to see these individuals again after a few years. We return to the Bahamas on 9 August with a visit to Bimini and Xenia's research project. Two more data collection trips are planned for my research – the second and fourth weeks of August. Our field reports will resume on 9 August with our trek to Bimini. Xenia's reports will continue on a weekly basis to the Bahamas section of our 2001 field reports. See you in a few weeks. Cheers Kathleen