Thursday’s dolphin trip was the final trip of the week run by Al Sweeting, Jr. We all descended upon the boat, ready for dolphins, even if we were a bit tired from these busy weeks! I had seen a manta ray cruising the beach earlier in the morning so I was keeping my eyes peeled for that. I was so focused that I nearly missed the bottlenose dolphins right in front of me! Very close to the harbor entrance we saw a group of bottlenose dolphins who at first appeared to be feeding. That is a perfect time to observe these guys, but unfortunately there was too much boat traffic in the area to safely enter the water. Soon, it was clear that they were moving south anyway…
It was a lot of waiting and watching until we saw our next dolphin. It appeared to be a lone bottlenose dolphin hanging just where the Great Bahama Bank meets the deep, deep Gulf Stream. It was on the move and soon we lost it (but not before getting dorsal fin photos for future ID work!). After this sighting we had to wait until 1900 for more dolphins! We saw scattered Atlantic spotted dolphins, including un-named adults #40 and 75. It was interesting that #75, an adult male, was hanging with what appeared to be two calves…hmmm….None of the dolphins was interested in us or the boat for too long, unfortunately. Our ride home including a beautiful pink sky and scattered bottlenose dolphins everywhere (or so it seemed). So, although it was not a great day for underwater data, it was still dolphin-filled.
A couple of days on dry land and then more dolphin trips!