Thursday, July 9, 2009

Amazing dolphins

Another successful day of gathering data. There seemed to be dolphins and birds everywhere. The birds, gulls and terns, flock to where the dolphins are feeding to try to catch the fish they bring to the surface. Can you see them diving? This group was spotted after the survey was completed, so we were just watching in amazement.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Collecting Data

When dolphins are located, data is collected and input into a hand held computer. You can hear some of the data being recorded in the video as JoAn photographs the dolphins. We will crop the photos in the afternoon and use the nicks and markings on their dorsal fin to identify the individual dolphins in the group.

Dolphin Studies

This was our research vessel, a 6 meter Zodiak inflatable. Seven of us spent 4 hours each morning on the boat observing dolphins, birds, and their behaviors. Luckily we all worked very well together and had a successful expedition.

Here we are on the Ionian Sea after about 4 hours of surveying. The principal scientist is JoAn (driving the boat, Spain), his assistant Iva (a graduate student from Belgrade), volunteers Sophie (England) and Me (New York).

Monday, July 6, 2009

Dolphins of Greece - Amvrikikos Gulf

I've arrived in Greece after quite a harrowing 38 hour journey, but its well worth it.
The research station is in the little town of Vonitsa, near the west coast of Greece. We have spent each of the past mornings on the Gulf spotting dolphins, photographing them, and recording data about their behavior, social groups, feeding, etc...
My job this morning was to input data on the hand held computer. Not an easy task on a 6 meter inflatable boat which keeps moving, in the sun, with others calling out sighting information all at once.
Here are a couple of photos. I'll add more as time permits and even some video of the dolphins.