1st Trip of 2017

Trip #2017-01

It’s early May and we begin our 32nd consecutive field season with the spotted dolphins in the Bahamas. Flat as glass and with a mirror reflection, our first two days on the boat were remarkable.  One hardly had to jump in the water to see be able to see everything.  As R/V Stenella glided through the gin-clear water we saw turtles and sharks from the boat.  Every details of every fish were visible through the water.  This is why I began to study dolphins in the Bahamas, because you can see under the water, where they live and observe their behavior.

Naia and Nala, a new female calf of the season Photo: Bethany Augliere

As many of you know, in 2013 over half of our resident dolphins moved to a new field site, leaving a small northern group and a southern group behind.  Luckily the southern group of dolphins on Little Bahama Bank did show up throughout the week. Naia, Summer, and Flambe, all pregnant last year and repeat mothers, showed off their new calves of the season, Nala, Spring, and Flame.  With a few excited interns and some of our regular participants, we eagerly documented these new members to the dolphin community, as well as updating spot patterns on the rambunctious juveniles of the group.  It appears to be a summer full of new calves and exciting underwater observations.

Two bottlenose identified on first trip…Jagger and friend.

 

Stay tuned for more blogs from the field

Denise Herzing, PhD,

Research Director