Crater feeding bottlenose


Tuesday was a busy day for the DCP’s Bimini team. As Kali did her final island exploration, packed her bags and began her journey home, Kel continued her duties at the computer to help keep the Bimini research chugging away. Ellyne was on her own, with Bimini Adventures of course, on a beautiful day with small ripple waves and lots of sunshine with some puffy clouds in the sky. The aquamarine layers in the water were very distinct with lighter aqua water to deeper blue water. We started the boat trip heading towards “Three Sisters” for a snorkel. The guests were eager to snorkel and explore the coral reef; Ellyne joined them as it was a new snorkel area for her as well. Some of the snorkelers saw a fish that looked like a rock, a barracuda, a shark, many colorful fish including large blue parrot fish. 


We soon returned to searching for dolphins. Forty minutes later we saw four bottlenose dolphins pass by the bow of the boat and swim to the side of the boat. We saw more bottlenose dolphins to the side of us and moved closer. They were crater feeding in about 30 feet of water, pausing briefly at the surface to breathe. As we entered the water we could see a group of 10 bottlenose dolphins spread out scanning for fish in the sand. A few of the snorkelers were gently free diving to getter a closer look at the dolphins crater feeding. There were some young dolphins biting on another dolphin’s peduncle and coming closer to us – giving us a each a better look! A few of the dolphins were rubbing pectoral fins and rubbing their bodies on the sea floor. The dolphins stayed mainly in the same area for an hour and we tried to stay with them as the currents drifted the snorkelers. Captain Audley saw another group of about seven bottlenose dolphins possibly mating a little further away from the group that we were snorkeling with. Then the dolphins left the area and were out of sight so we all headed back to the boat. We searched a bit long, but soon turned around to head back to land. 


On the way back the water was so calm and we could see more activity in the water.  We saw a few splashes in the distance but when we moved closer they turned out to be a school of spade fish. We were still very happy to see some fish as well on this wonderful boat trip. It was a great day, complete with fun snorkeling and a great bottlenose dolphin observation!  


All that splashes,