04 November 2019

Dolphin lecture for children in Pordenone 2




At the end of her lecture, Silvia received a gift and this beautiful dolphin :-)

(Photo by G. Bearzi)

Dolphin lecture for children in Pordenone 1



Today's lecture for primary school children at Collegio Don Bosco, Pordenone.

(Photos by G. Bearzi)

31 October 2019

Trawler, then social



Bottlenose dolphins socializing after having followed a trawler.

(Photos by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

30 October 2019

29 October 2019

27 October 2019

Seagulls in the wake



Seagulls feeding on fish discarded by a trawler.

(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

26 October 2019

Dolphins and otter trawler buoy



Bottlenose dolphins following otter trawlerS often surface in the proximity of the towed buoy.

(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

Otter trawler buoy



The buoy being towed at the end an otter trawler's net.

(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

25 October 2019

Dead sea turtle



Silvia inspects a dead loggerhead sea turtle found floating adrift. Of a total of 109 sea turtles encountered during 11,000 km of navigation in 2018 and 2019, seven were dead.

(Photos by G. Bearzi, Northern Adriatic Sea)

Right before dawn


(Photo by G. Bearzi, Northern Adriatic Sea)

23 October 2019

21 October 2019

A sea of seagulls



Thousands of seagulls wait in the proximity of midwater pair trawlers, after having fed on fish crushed, discarded and lost from the nets.

(Photos by S. Bonizzoni and G. Bearzi, Northern Adriatic Sea)

20 October 2019

Eyes shut



An adult bottlenose dolphin performs a forward breach while keeping her eye shut.

(Photos by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

17 October 2019

Mullet catch



A bottlenose dolphin catches a mullet after a bellly-up chase.

(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

In the fog again



A thick fog keeps us idle until midday before we can manage to start our dolphin survey.

(Photo by G. Bearzi, Northern Adriatic Sea)

Dead loggerhead



A large loggerhead sea turtle found dead off Lignano, Italy.

(Photo by G. Bearzi, Northern Adriatic Sea)

16 October 2019

Dolphins off Lido di Jesolo (2)



One more image of a young bottlenose dolphin off Lido di Jesolo, Italy.

(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

Dolphins off Lido di Jesolo (1)



Bottlenose dolphin adult and juvenile, part of a large group on the move off the coast of Lido di Jesolo, Italy.

(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

14 October 2019

Stuck in the fog



Today we spent two hours stuck in a thick morning fog. Low visibility prevented navigation (we do not have a radar). So we set up our radar reflector and waited, ready to honk and do our best to prevent a collision. Fog at sea can be scary, especially when one hears the noise of an approaching boat but cannot tell its distance and direction—until the boat becomes visible and is very very close.

(Photos by G. Bearzi, Northern Adriatic Sea)

Seagull kills small bird



While doing our survey in offshore waters, we spotted five seagulls harassing a small migratory bird. The small one did his best to fly away and avoid being killed, but he was hopeless. One of the seagulls eventually caught the small bird, while the other gulls tried to steal it from its beak. Then the seagull ingested the entire bird while flying.

One of the reasons why seagulls are still plentiful, while many other bird species decline, is that they have an incredibly flexible behaviour and diet. They can be hunters (as observed here), gatherers, scavengers, thieves, beggars and more.

(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

13 October 2019

Adriatic LNG dolphin



Today we spotted several groups of bottlenose dolphins near the Adriatic LNG gas offshore terminal (right outside of the no-entry zone).

(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

Helium balloon 2

While searching for dolphins we look for other marine wildlife, but on some days we just encounter... helium balloons floating adrift :-/

(Photo by G. Bearzi, Northern Adriatic Sea)

Helium balloon



One more helium balloon lost at sea. Short-term fun, long-term damage.

(Photo by G. Bearzi, Northern Adriatic Sea)

11 October 2019

08 October 2019

07 October 2019

Sun shape



The sun isn't round!

(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

06 October 2019

Studying Dolphins in a Sea of Change



Yesterday's seminar at the Venice Natural History Museum, titled "Studying Dolphins in a Sea of Change", attracted a passionate and attentive audience. Thank you Luca Mizzan, Margherita Fusco and the VNHM staff for giving us a chance to present our work and vision.

(Photos by S. Bonizzoni)

05 October 2019

ISMAR seminar "I delfini del Veneto"



Yesterday Giovanni Bearzi presented the work done by Dolphin Biology and Conservation to researchers of the Institute of Marine Sciences (CNR - National Research Council), at ISMAR's headquarters in the Arsenal of Venice, Italy. The seminar was followed by a productive meeting with ISMAR researchers (Giovanni is himself an ISMAR Associate). An abstract (in Italian) is copied below. Thank you Mauro Bastianini for facilitating the seminar and meeting!

I DELFINI DEL VENETO
Il seminario illustrerà alcune attività di ricerca che intendono contribuire all'identificazione di misure gestionali per la tutela dei cetacei nelle acque del Veneto. Il lavoro svolto da Dolphin Biology and Conservation comprende survey regolari lungo transetti statistici e cattura-ricattura fotografica. Dal 2018 sono state archiviate circa 18.000 foto di pinne dorsali, che hanno consentito di effettuare una prima stima della popolazione che frequenta queste acque. Lo studio utilizza anche modelli statistici di distribuzione al fine di identificare l'habitat critico dei delfini, comprendere i fattori che ne determinano la distribuzione e valutare l'impatto delle attività umane. Nelle acque del Veneto i tursiopi hanno imparato ad alimentarsi al seguito di pescherecci a strascico: le osservazioni in mare consentono di studiare questo comportamento opportunistico, contribuendo all'identificazione di problemi e possibili soluzioni.

03 October 2019

Studiare i delfini in un mare che cambia


Studiare i delfini in un mare che cambia

5 ottobre 2019 ore 15:30

Museo di Storia Naturale, Fontego dei Turchi, Santa Croce 1730, Venezia

Fino a qualche decina di anni fa il lavoro del biologo marino consisteva soprattutto nel documentare la straordinaria ricchezza e complessità dell'ambiente acquatico, fra organismi che suscitavano incessante meraviglia e risorse che parevano inesauribili. Oggi è quasi impossibile lavorare in mare senza fare i conti con gli enormi e sconvolgenti cambiamenti verificatisi a causa delle attività umane. Molti ambienti marini sono stati alterati drammaticamente e gli organismi che li abitano stentano a sopravvivere, o ci riescono solo grazie a ingegnosi adattamenti (come quelli messi in atto dai delfini che vivono nelle acque del Veneto). Studiare i delfini oggi è anche una lotta contro il tempo per documentare i problemi di questi mammiferi marini e impedirne il declino, nel tentativo di limitare i danni e contribuire alla tutela di un mondo sommerso che meriterebbe amore e ammirazione, e che invece continuiamo a devastare.

Giovanni Bearzi ha conseguito una Laurea in Scienze Biologiche all’Università di Padova e un Dottorato in Zoologia all’Università di Basilea. Nato a Venezia, svolge ricerche sui cetacei sin dal 1986, in particolare nei mari Adriatico e Ionio. Ha fondato e diretto per dieci anni un programma di ricerca e conservazione sui delfini in Croazia, premiato con l’Henry Ford European Conservation Award come miglior progetto europeo. Nel 2001 è stato nominato Pew Fellow in Marine Conservation, il più prestigioso riconoscimento internazionale in questo settore. E’ stato membro del Consiglio direttivo (1990-2010) e Presidente (2000-2010) dell’Istituto Tethys. Professore a contratto di Tutela dei Cetacei (2002-2006) alla Facoltà di Scienze Ambientali dell’Università di Venezia. Visiting Senior Scientist all'Istituto di Scienze Marine della Texas A&M University (2011-2012). Ricercatore associato della Texas A&M University (2013-2017) e di OceanCare (dal 2014). Presidente di Dolphin Biology and Conservation dal 2011 e associato all'Istituto di Scienze Marine del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche dal 2019. Ha pubblicato circa 150 fra contributi scientifici, piani di gestione per i cetacei e altri lavori a sostegno della tutela del mare. http://www.dolphinbiology.org/it/people/giovanni_bearzi.htm

Seagull on sea turtle



A seagull searches for edible items on the shell of a dead loggerhead sea turtle floating adrift.

Also see this post.

(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

01 October 2019

Silhouette



Bottlenose dolphin silhouette.

(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

30 September 2019

Large group



A large group of bottlenose dolphins swimming in a tight formation.

(Photos by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

29 September 2019

Not a dolphin



As we wait to resume our work at sea we make a different kind of sighting.

(Photo by G. Bearzi)

Pit stop



After a planned survey goes wrong because of unmanageable waves, we try a temporary stop and wait for a calmer sea. It did not work.

(Photos by G. Bearzi)

26 September 2019

24 September 2019

Lateral leap



(Photo by S. Bonizzoni, Northern Adriatic Sea)

Colourful morning



Looking for dolphins before the sun rises.

(Photo by G. Bearzi, Northern Adriatic Sea)

23 September 2019

Infrequent social interactions



Lively social interactions (often including synchronous jumps) are rather uncommon off the region of Veneto, Italy, where bottlenose dolphins are mostly busy looking for food. Here, however, we recorded one of those infrequent occasions.

(Photo by G. Bearzi, Northern Adriatic Sea)