So, I had been wondering when we would get on the ocean after the outskirts of Hurricane Irene passed through. But, thankfully, Bimini Undersea got a trip together on Saturday! I very much enjoyed my time with the day’s passengers – and of course, the dolphins.

We departed feeling a bit uncertain about the weather. A few squalls had passed through earlier in the day and yesterday afternoon included a fierce thunderstorm. But, as far as we could tell the skies ahead were clear; and we were hoping they would stay that way!

Sure enough, they did and the dolphins came surfing by. At first, there were only two and we couldn’t keep them in view. We didn’t give up though and soon we five, six…nine dolphins! Although the underwater visibility was quite poor for Bimini, the dolphins came so close it did not matter. In the group we saw Cerra (#38, with her calf), Trudy (#57, likely with a calf too), Addie (#84) and un-named #43 and #93. I’m not sure what was going on between Trudy and Addie though – they were being quite feisty with each other!

Until next time,
Kel

Tuesday’s dolphin trip departed shortly after 14:00 and almost immediately we were in the midst of a group of 5 bottlenose dolphins. They were traveling southBIM11_T82_TtFluke and there seemed to be a similar sized group keeping pace just to the west. We were given a rare treat with the bottlenose occasionally bowriding! At one point, the main group suddenly interrupted their travel for some activity at the surface. It gave us a chance to see one individual’s very distinct fluke (pictured here). We’ll see if we can match this fluke to a known dorsal fin….

Since these dolphins were on the move, we eventually did the same. About an hour later, we came upon another group of bottlenose! This time there were at least eight individuals, but they too were on the move. Of course, this means lots more dorsal fin photographs to sort for IDs.

A bit later in the afternoon, we came upon the much sought after spotted dolphins! There were 10 individuals and the majority of them were adults. They too seemed to be on the move, but when we tried for an underwater encounter, we were not disappointed! We got close views of several and saw lots of socio-sexual behavior. Lumpy (#17) made a quick appearance and we saw un-named #24 from the boat, but it was Buster (#04) and Tim (#69) who really stole the show.

A special thanks goes out to this week’s passengers who have made the most of these two days on the boat. We’re all now gearing up for whatever effects of Hurricane Irene we might get. We’re playing it safe!

Oh – and I figured out who that mystery mom was from Monday’s trip: un-named #40! Yippee!

Until next time,
Kel

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