Getting Ready to Go

Preparing Umi and me for the Summer

The packing is complete: three big (and heavy) cases with my array and click detector, my tools, lots of blank videotapes and batteries, some books and clothing and, soon, my computer. Because of the mandatory two-week quarantine, Umi is not returning to Japan with me this summer. (Many of my friends on Miyake Island were disappointed at not getting to see Umi this summer!) Instead, Umi is staying with my parents in Connecticut … a sort of canine summer camp where Umi will play with my parents’ two black labs, Jazz and Eponine. They are three times Umi’s size but she holds her own and barks at Jazz from a chair … so they see eye-to-eye! I’ll miss Umi but have packed many photos. Previously, I lived in Japan studying bottlenose dolphins around Mikura Island. Mikura is a dormant volcano likely thousands of years old. The near shore area is shallow, but depths over 100 meters can be found within 300 meters of shore. The coast is lined with boulders and pebbles. The Kuroshio current (like the USA east coast’s Gulf Stream) annually encompasses the island in its northerly flow and brings a variety of fish. Due to the deep waters around the island, the effect resembles an upwelling near the island. Thus, fish species are abundant. I’ll be living on Mikura this summer while I study the bottlenose dolphins and their behavior and communication.