We had a great day with the sun rising brightly and the sky relatively free of clouds. And, really good, clear underwater visibility. And, equipment that worked as expected! Thankfully, Lenca spent more time with Ronnie this morning than investigating my fins! Tank and Dory circle swam around me but they had nothing on Stan who zoomed in tight circles creating many bubbles around me! Bubbles seemed to be the “name-of-the-game” today as Calli also sank vertical in the water column and let out several rounds of larger bubble clouds.
The inter-dolphin social activity was low-key this morning with several parallel swims and rubbing between dolphins. Poli and Champ spent time slow swimming as did Gracie, Maury and Elli.
The late morning was spent transferring footage to the hard drives for back up and reviewing the notes and logging surface observations. John was able to film a few of the dolphin dive training sessions – i.e., the dolphins follow the small boat out over the reef as they would do with a dolphin dive. The sea outside the reef was still a bit turbulent but the swims and training sessions went well.
Our group leaves tomorrow in exchange for the student group with Justin from URI. So, stay tuned for an update tomorrow after the group shift, and with an update about the morning data collection session. In the photo with this entry, you can see our team spread out around the lagoon area collecting data – a dedicated team for sure!
Kathleen, Ron, Bill, Jeff, John, Madison, Rachel and Manon