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Unforgettable "Dalmatian" experience

This morning, after following a group of bottlenose dolphins for about an hour and a half we encountered a large group of Dalmatian pelicans Pelecanus crispus. In total, we estimated 24 individuals. Slowly approaching them with our research boat they allowed us to observe them from just a few meters away. Dalmatian pelicans are large […]

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Ionian Dolphin Project: updated report 1991-2009

The Ionian Dolphin Project, a long-term research and conservation programme conducted by Tethys in the eastern Ionian Sea, has recently completed a report of the activities done in the context of its three study areas in Greece: Gulf of Amvrakikos, Gulf of Corinth and Inner Ionian Sea Archipelago. The online version of the report can […]

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Old friends sighted around Kalamos

A few days ago, two V.I.D. (Very Important Dolphins) were encountered around the island Kalamos: Pira and Spiti, both bottlenose dolphins, seen together in a group of 11 individuals. In 2006 Pira, a male, had a piece of yellow fishing net stuck in his blowhole, but by July 2009 he had managed to extrude the […]

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Ionian Dolphin Project web update

The web site section of the Ionian Dolphin Project has been updated to include work conducted until July 2009. Check it out! http://www.tethys.org/projects/IDP/ — The Ionian Dolphin Project is a long-term research and conservation programme conducted by the Tethys Research Institute in the Ionian Sea. In 1991 the Tethys Research Institute started a study around […]

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First survey of the year in Kalamos

On June 8th, we carried out the first survey of the year in the area of Kalamos. It felt good to navigate these waters, where I had my first dolphin sighting ten years ago, after four years without personally doing any survey in this area. However, no dolphins were spotted across more than 3 hours […]

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What is a dolphin group?

That group-living animals mainly exist in groups is pretty straightforward. What is less straightforward is how to define what constitutes a group, particularly for elusive and socially intelligent creatures like bottlenose dolphins. In areas of high dolphin densities – like the Amvrakikos Gulf – it is common to see plenty of dolphins spread around the […]

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Challenging counts

Two consecutive days of observing dolphins ‘families’, with all age classes represented, has left me even more intrigued by the intricacies of social organisation among these intelligent animals. Flanked by what we presume to be their mothers, siblings and ‘babysitters’, Joan, myself and the team of volunteers enjoyed a couple of magic hours in the […]

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Life goes on for "super-mama"

Today we saw a very special friend. I was happy to see a female bottlenose dolphin very well know to us. Her photoidentification code in our catalogue is 03046, but since July 2007 I keep referring to her as “super-mama” (super-mom). During the 3rd and 4th of July 2007 we observed her mourning a dead […]

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First newborns of the season!

Today we saw the first newborns of the 2009 research season in the Amvrakikos Gulf. What initially started as a sighting of a single individual quickly evolved into one that will stay in our retinas for quite a while. After about half an hour with this new group, we were amazed to see two newborns […]

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Encounter with a dead sea turtle

This morning, while surveying the waters of the Gulf in search for dolphins, a dead loggerhead sea turtle Caretta caretta was found floating adrift. Examination of the corpse was carried out by our team from the research boat. Decomposition was not advanced, indicating that death had probably occurred less than 24 hours before. It was […]

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