Friday was a busy day. Nicole & Salma began their final day on Bimini with the sunrise, and continued to make the most of their final hours on-island by exploring and picking up last minute treats (can you say Mr. Charlie’s Bimini bread and guava jam?!). Sadly, all too soon, the water taxi was calling them, figuratively speaking, and they headed to South Bimini for their flights back to the US. I remember how it felt each summer when I was an intern, and then a Master’s student, getting on that water taxi for the final time, wondering, “Is this really the final time?” My own internship experience fundamentally changed the course of my life. I cannot expect that for every intern, but I certainly hope that both Nicole & Salma had at least a small fraction of the positive internship experience I had. Or should I say that I hope their experience was as great for them as their help to DCP was! It was a pleasure to have you both!
For me, it was quick dockside goodbyes as a dolphin trip was calling my name. Armed with the DCP clipboard once again, the day’s trip was unlike Thursday’s. We searched. And searched. And searched some more. When folks got antsy, everyone jumped in the water to cool off. When folks got dizzy from staring at the ocean, it was snack time. Then, finally, on the last leg of our dolphin search, there they were. Two, three, four Atlantic spotted dolphins. Romeo (#10) and Tilly (#87) made themselves very obvious as did two adults, although I did not readily recognize them. We did not know what to expect from the underwater encounter, but with fading sunlight, it was now or never. The encounter turned out to be very interesting. The two adults did not readily interact with Romeo & Tilly, but Romeo & Tilly were extremely interactive with each other (like in this photo!). There was a fair bit of whistling and both dolphins played with sargassum, occasionally interrupting their object play to investigate the humans quite closely. At least one of the adults (male) did come by DCP’s camera, so hopefully we will be able to ID this guy when we review the video…I wonder who he is…
We arrived back at the dock as the sun was setting and everyone from this week was using words like “lucky” and “grateful.” It really was a fantastic week.
Just one day off the boat before the final two boat trips of the main summer field season. Fingers crossed the weather (and dolphins) cooperate!
Until next time,