100,000 dolphins off California, video


Wildlife Extra writes about this video:

As many as 100,000 dolphins in one vast pod spotted off San Diego

March 2013. Joe Dutra, captain of a whale watching boat in San Diego, reported in February that he had seen a vast ‘super-mega pod’ of dolphins covering an area 7.5 miles long and almost 6 miles wide and containing an estimated 100,000 dolphins. The entire group of dolphins appeared to be common dolphins.

Several thousand birds, seagulls, pelicans and others, were also in the area and there was a huge amount of bait activity which assisted in this feeding frenzy!

Captain Dutra said: “In my past years in the fishing industry, years ago, I used to see massive schools of dolphins off the coast of Central and South America, but nothing like this. This was a once in a life time experience. Truly Amazing!”

Going fishing this summer? Watch your gear and don’t cut the line. Fish with hooks have been found embedded in the throats of dolphins off the coast of Florida: here.

Wildlife art festival in California


MIKE DOWELL holds a finished Shoveler (type of duck) he made earlier with extreme fine detail. U/T photo CHARLIE NEUMAN

From the San Diego Union-Tribune in the USA:

Wildlife art festival in Point Loma this weekend

By NTC Promenade Corky McMillin Events Center 12:01 a.m.Feb. 14, 2013

Duck-carvers, wildlife painters and animal enthusiasts will gather this weekend for the 40th annual California Open. The two-day festival showcases the work of as many as 150 artists and fish and duck decoy carvers from the U.S. and abroad. There will be a carving competition (wildfowl, fish and birds), an exhibit of antique decoys, a palm frond-carving contest, live auctions, art exhibits and vendor booths. This year’s featured artist is Dehesa resident Gloria Chadwick, a retired psychiatric nurse who enjoys painting and sketching wildlife at the San Diego Zoo. From 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday, artists ages 16 and under are invited to take part in the Al Deddens Memorial Youth Painting Event. Children can try their hand at painting a wooden silhouette. All materials will be provided for the take-home art project.

The festival frons from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 16 and 17, at NTC Promenade, Corky McMillin Events Center, Liberty Station, 2875 Dewey Road, Point Loma. Adult weekend pass, $5. Children 11 and under, free. Visit pswa.net.

– Pam Kragen

3-Million-Year-Old Whale Discovered at the San Diego Zoo, USA


This video is called Whale evolution.

From Discovery News in the USA:

3-Million-Year-Old Whale Unearthed at the San Diego Zoo

Analysis by Jennifer Viegas

Fri Sep 17, 2010 08:05 PM ET

Workmen constructing a storm water equalization tank this week at the San Diego Zoo dug up a surprising find: a 3-million-year-old whale.

The construction crew was using an excavotor to dig through fine grain sand, when suddenly the machine struck a solid item. Further investigation revealed that this obstacle was an enormous prehistoric whale.

Our genus, Homo, wasn’t even around 3 million years ago, so this wasn’t some sort of super prehistoric zoo. The site then, during the Pliocene, was under water.

The 24-foot baleen whale appears to be very well preserved, with much of the fossilized skeleton present. Finding an intact skull, along with the vertebrae and flippers, is quite rare, according to Sarah Siren, San Diego Natural History Museum paleontological field manager.

The skull and other large pieces will be encapsulated in plaster jackets while smaller pieces, including vertebrae, are being cleaned with brushes and boxed up to be moved to the museum’s laboratory for analysis of the finds.

The age of this whale is interesting, as it coincides with what’s known as The Great American Interchange, where various land and freshwater faunas migrated between North and South America. Many species went extinct then. But armadillos, opposums, hummingbirds and vampire bats all traveled to North America, while horses, tapirs, saber-toothed cats and deer entered South America. The first short-faced bears also appeared at this time.

See also here.

Sperm whales: a long and vicious history: here.

Researchers have found that Sperm whales communicate with other members of their pod using a handful of patterned clicks which all individuals in the group share: here.