Dolphins Smile For The Camera!

Photography, Science, Thoughts

I saw a great viral video recently containing footage from a fishing trip off the coast of Santa Cruz, CA. Mark Peters, the one who filmed the video, created a little torpedo capsule for his GoPro camera to get some underwater shots of the tuna him and his friends were fishing for. Little did he know how precious that GoPro would be when a pod of dolphins started swimming next to their boat… Check it out below!

The Blue

Isn’t it hard not to smile when you see a dolphin 🙂 ? Dolphins are such beautiful, curious, smart, and for the most part very friendly creatures. The Pacific White-Sided Dolphins as seen in Mark’s video are very common off the coast of California. I actually did a little pointillism drawing a couple of years ago of a Pacific White-Sided Dolphin as seen below. It was a fun and relatively simple drawing to do 🙂 Hope all of you are enjoying your week thus far- keep smiling!

My Pacific White Sided Dolphin Drawing

Octopus Hitches a Ride on a Dolphin’s Private Parts

Photography, Science, Thoughts

Well, when you think you’ve seen it all, a story like this comes along!

In the Ionian Sea, researchers conducting the Ionian Dolphin Project were out watching a pod of friendly dolphins. And when one jumped out of the water, they saw something peculiar dangling from the underside of the cetacean.

After the researchers came back and examined the photos more closely, they saw that the peculiar object was none other than an octopus hitching a joyride on the dolphin! Well, it may have not been the best joyride because the dolphin was most likely jumping out of the water so much to dislodge the poor little octopus from its body. A scary joyride if you ask me.

Unfortunately for the dolphin, the octopus seemed to be lodged into its genital slit. Awkward…

Who knows how or why this happened-  maybe the dolphin tried to eat the octopus and the octopus was doing this for payback? Or the octopus just wanted to experience what it was like to swim with dolphins? Maybe the octopus is having an identity (and species) crisis? We will never know. Let’s just be happy that we wear bathing suits (at least most of us) when we are swimming in that big blue! I definitely don’t want an octopus to find a place to become lodged anywhere on my body (too much?..oops). Hahah!

Dogs and Dolphins= Secret Best Friends?

Science, Thoughts

First off, it seems like there is a lot of negative articles coming out bout dolphins and manatees dying in record numbers, animals going extinct, that there will be a sixth mass extinction on the planet from human-induced activities, and so forth..

Right now being an avid job hunter after graduating from college in December for the last 2.5 months..there is a lot of negativity in my life everyday sending tons of emails with my resumes that seem to go into some black-hole of the internet. It is frustrating! Plus living with friends and having over half my stuff still in storage isn’t my idea of life after college. Oh well- I am super thankful for my awesome friends and their families, as well as my family for keeping my spirits up and assuring me I have an awesome support team who knows I will succeed.

SOOOO I want to post some fun and positive stories now 🙂

Firstly: let’s investigate this dog being rescued by dolphins story. A Doberman pincher got stuck in a canal in Florida. A couple saw 2 dolphins splashing vigorously against the canal wall..they thought that was particularly odd. They went to investigate and saw 60 pound, completely exhausted dog standing on a half submerged sandbar. He was too exhausted to even bark. So either the dolphins made commotion to attract attention to save the dogs life, or they were just at the right place at the right time, OR they could have been making the sandbar bigger so the tired dog could rest and stop swimming. The article says the dolphins were helping the dog stay afloat. Who knows the truth but those friendly “Flippers”…

Here's an old picture of me Sea World camp feeding a dolphin 🙂 Thought it was appropriate!

ALSO- I just found this like 5 minutes after I posted the previous story and HAD to share it with you. Maybe the relationship between man’s best friend and dolphins runs deeper than we think.

Sad News For Dolphins…


Unfortunately, there is not a lot of good news updates right now about the ocean and it’s inhabitants. The Gulf of Mexico is still being hit hard from the oil spill. I know that it’s been out of the news for awhile now, and I’m sure out of people’s minds…but it’s still a huge negative reality- not only for ocean animals, but for people and children being affected by the chemicals.

Right now- around 20 dolphin calves have washed up dead on shore around the Mississippi/Alabama shores.  The reason of their death is still unclear- but it will most likely be linked to the 205.8 million gallons of crude oil that was spilled into the gulf.

The second story I want to share is about grey whales. I just saw 3 grey whales when I was up in Monterey at the beginning of February- they were gorgeous!  Currently, the most critically endangered whale is the Western North Pacific Gray Whale which can be found off the coast of Russia.  But plans for a new oil rig off the coast of Russia will be very harmful to the Gray Whale habitat. With less than 100 individuals whales alive, increased noise pollution could further endanger this species when tying to find their food. Thus another example of how our human consumerism pretty much wins over other animals’ lives.

Microphones in the Ocean- Listen to whales while you work!

Science, Thoughts

So I thought that this was pretty cool for all you ocean lovers out there 🙂

Just launched a couple days ago online: LIDO created a website where you can listen (in real time) to microphones that they have places all around in the world’s oceans. The microphones right now they are mostly near Europe and the Middle East. LIDO stands for “Listening to the Deep Ocean environment)- their goal for this website is to establish the first center of a regional network of multidisciplinary seafloor observatories contributing to the coordination of high quality research.

By doing this- they can have long-term data on Geohazards (earthquakes/tsunamis), Marine Ambient Noise (induced by marine mammals and anthropogenic noise produced by humans in the means of boats/subs) in the Mediterranean Sea and the adjacent Atlantic waters.

This is pretty cool- you can just have the website up on your desktop- and right at that exact moment a sperm whale could swim by the mic and you’d hear him talking! On the website if you search around you can find clips that they’ve recorded of different whales, dolphins, and ships.

Check it out- go have fun and listen to some dolphins 🙂 CLICK HERE.

“Her Royal Deepness”- Sylvia Earle’s Take on The Oil Spill

Photography, Science

Sylvia Earle is a world renowned marine biologist-seabed explorer- author- and former to US government scientist. She is definitely a figure to look up to for me in particular.

In  a recent interview- she discussed her opposition of the new method being used for the Gulf’s oil spill.

Currently- dispersant chemicals are being released into the open ocean to break up oil into small droplets that sink into the water column. Sylvia brought up a good point that ” IF they put dispersants into any body of water without the presence of oil, people would be up in arms about the release of such toxic substances.” –Which is very true.

Federal government biologists who approved the dispersants say that they are toxic to some extent, bu they keep the oil from reaching sensitive wetland habitat along the coast. But as I see it- the government feels that the area (coastline) where more people live is more important than the health of the marine life in the open oceans.

Below are some pictures I wanted to share from a trip I took to Bahia de Los Angeles in the Sea of Cortez within the Baja Peninsula in 2007. I took an intensive Marine Biology course down there- and it was one of the best experiences of my life. Although this isn’t the Gulf of Mexico per-say –>I just wanted to show the beauty of the ocean and it’s creatures and how important it is to protect the open ocean as well as the coastlines.