DPMMR’s Photo-ID researchers conducted multiple photo-ID surveys between Key Largo and Islamorada at the end of August on both Atlantic and Florida Bay sides. The first day resulted in 3 sightings with a total of 7 individual dolphins which are identified by the nicks and notches on their dorsal fins. Of these dolphins, 4 have been previously sighted within the Upper Keys region. These re-sights suggest strong site fidelity to the region which has implications for management and conservation efforts.
Photo-ID surveys can be unpredictable, and we never know what to expect when we leave the dock. One example of this is exhibited in the second day of surveys which unfortunately resulted in no dolphin sightings. Unpredictability of dolphins and weather conditions are a few of the challenges that hinder marine mammal field work efforts.
All surveys are conducted under NMFS GA No. 21556.