Our first day was a great success – after just 1 day, we are feeling confident that this will be a great year. Are they happy to see us?  We had our first boat trip of the season this morning and it was a great way to get things started! We saw lots of dolphins, and were lucky enough to see all 4 of the new calves born so far this year. They were very small, some with fetal folds still visible. We ran across 3 large groups and got plenty of time in the water. One calf, who was about 1 year old, spent a great deal of time circle swimming around us together with anothe mother dolphin and calfr subadult female. This made me quite dizzy as I tried to keep up with her - even though she was only small, she was fast as lightning! And two males spent a good few minutes checking us out. The water was also filled with incandescent jellyfish, which made it feel like we were swimming in a bowl of glow in the dark chicken soup. We witnessed a whole range of interesting behaviors including pectoral fin rubbing, playing with seaweed and of course the constant ‘click click’ of the dolphins checking out our cameras with their echolocation. If the rest of the season is as good as today, we will have tons of valuable data for our research! This being my first time out here on Mikura, I can gladly report that the dolphins around here are a lot of fun to swim with, and that I am looking forward to a great field season!

-Justin

 

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Dolphin Communication Project
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Port St. Lucie, FL, 34985
USA

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