It was a long day, with video all morning & a boat trip in the afternoon. But, the boat trip was a good one. Here’s the list of who was seen: Finn (#09), Romeo (#10), Tina (#14), Freckles (#15), Split Jaw (#22), Billy (#64), Nemo (#76), un-named #s 78, 79, 85, 88 and possibly Cleopatra (#41) and Cerra (#38). It was amazing!! After a very rambunctious swim, we returned to the boat exhausted & headed back to the dock. I guess there’s more video to go through for IDs!
The excitement for today is the official inclusion of spotted dolphin ID#89. It is a young juvenile male, who, much to my surprise, was still observed nursing this afternoon! The animal was actually observed bowriding last season, but because its spots were so few & faint, we decided not to officially add the animal to the photo-ID catalog. Today confirmed things though, as we observed this young dolphin from the boat for over 90 minutes, plus a very brief swim. Even though the swim was short, I was able to catch a few photos.
Is it already Saturday? How do these days go by so quickly? I spent the bulk of the last few days going through video & the rest of my end-of-the-season-to-do-list. I’m in a pretty good place, but there is still lots to be done to make sure I return to the DCP office organized. (Yes, me, organized – imagine that!) Tomorrow begins the final dolphin week of the 2007 season – I really cannot believe it.
Today’s trip departed the dock at 15:48. We first saw dolphins again in slightly deeper water than usual. We had three water entries, but the dolphins were moving so quickly that the only positive IDs I have (before reviewing the video) are Niecey (#48) and un-named #43. I’m also pretty sure that Cerra (#38) was there, but I’ll have to confirm that with video clips. While we were swimming in about 75 feet of water, there was a school (several dozen) of a fish I did not recognize.
Today’s dolphin trip was very busy. It was a group of at least 30 dolphins, scattered & traveling. We saw Finn (#09), Romeo (#10), Tina (#14), Lumpy (#17), Split Jaw (#22), White Blotch (#29), Lil’ Jess (#35), Swoosh (#36), Cerra (#38), Billy (#64) and un-named #25, 84, 85 and 87. We even observed a group of calves & juveniles playing with what looked like a sea cucumber. We were in & out of the water several times because the group kept moving, but I was able to record about 30 minutes of video.
Today I spent a lot of time logging video – so typing is a bit difficult for my little eyeballs! But, it was worth it because I confirmed dolphin ID #85, who had only been tentatively added to the catalog. I was also able to give another animal #88!! Both are young juveniles, one male (88), one female (85). Of course, there is always more video to do, but that’s what tomorrow (and the rest of the week) is for. Until then,
This morning I worked on data so that I could spend a few hours in the afternoon playing like a tourist. We headed to honeymoon harbor, a great spot just south of Bimini. I’ve been here many times before, but I have either been on the only boat in the area, or at most, one of four. Today there were, I’m not sure…well, actually I’m not sure I can count that high, there were that many boats! It was crazy! But very fun.
I cannot believe I really just wrote September when typing the date. How can that be? It has been a wonderful summer – and hurricane free for Bimini so far (fingers crossed). The island is very busy; Labor Day weekend & good boating weather are a great combination for local hotels & marinas. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like that will transfer to busy dolphin trips, but since there is much other work to be done, it is okay. Yesterday I said goodbye to my visitors from Dolphin Encounters.
This morning we headed to South Bimini to explore the new nature trail at Bimini Sands Resort. This trail is still in the development stages, but we were very impressed with the developers’ decision to preserve a very noteworthy section of land. When the trail is completed, there will be educational signs throughout, informing guests of local flora & fauna. If you are ever on Bimini, definitely go check it out! It is an amazing contrast to the ocean… Next, we bicycled to the northern portion of North Bimini.
This morning we prepared for the Wednesday phone link with the aquarium, but with no success – the electricity was out! And, no electricity, means no internet. Next, it was a video logging session with DE and Bimini Undersea staff. Then, while I prepped for the boat & took care of some loose ends, the DE staff ate fire. Yup, you read correctly, they ate fire with other dolphin week passengers. They seemed to enjoy the experience, even if it wasn’t something they thought they’d be doing in Bimini!