Dolphins! We started our day bright and early with dolphins … of course, we had the water taxi ride over to Baileys at 6:15 AM. We worked with the space-use data sheets for our first time this morning in association with Kathleen’s data collection session. It was nice to see the comparison of details for when Kathleen was with the dolphins versus when she was not. The sheets helped focus what I wanted or should document for data. Overall, the dolphins seemed less active this morning (at least at the surface of the water) than yesterday. It was cool because we could pay attention to more subtle behaviors.
A delicious breakfast was followed by a discussion of our data sheets and then grabbing our snorkel gear for the picnic and snorkeling at Maya Key. The bus ride provided us a new perspective of the island. We rode back toward the airport to go to Maya Key and it was our first time seeing the island in the day-time! We even marked the ride with a group selfie! (see photo).
Maya Key is beautiful – we snorkeled and saw many rescued and donated animals on the island. We saw the Maya ruin replica on the island and learned a bit about the culture. During the snorkel, several of us met jellyfish via their nematocysts. We also wafted the sting underwater rather than rubbing the stings into our skin! (Thank you to Peter for that wonderful piece of advice during the Fish ID talk!) The American Crocodile snapped at many of us … he seemed to be cranky! Or, maybe he did not appreciate being called little!
We returned to AKR and RIMS by about 14:45 and then had a break until 15:30 when we returned to Bailey’s Key to collect more dolphin space use data. We observed an encounter and recorded how the dolphins used their pool area … it was neat to watch the encounter and see their behaviors, including flips and speed swims, and tail walks! It was nice to compare seeing them with their trainers as opposed to swimming around Kathleen or by themselves.
Dinner … so much delicious food!
We are now sitting here after watching today’s video all about to fall asleep! Tomorrow begins again at 6:15 at the taxi stand.
Until tomorrow …
the Rams in Roatan and Kathleen