HUGE MEGA-POD OF 100,000+ DOLPHINS, SEVEN MILES LONG BY FIVE MILES WIDE, OFF SAN DIEGO BAFFLES EXPERTSPosted: February 19, 2013
Parts Reprinted from The Mail Online:
A group of over 100,000 dolphins spotted off the coast of San Diego caused a spectacle for nature watchers as they traveled together in an enormous pack. That figure was the extremely conservative estimate of the vessel’s skipper, Capt. Joe Dutra.
However this writer, with thousands of at-sea hours logged, marine biology experience, and a Master captain’s license estimated, highly un-scientifically, the megapod could contain upwards of from 4 to 10 million individuals, provided that a similar density to that displayed in the below photo was consistent over the entire 35 square nautical mile area described.
‘They were coming from all directions, you could see them from as far as the eye can see,’ Dutra said after seeing the spectacle first hand.
Capt. Dutra, of Hornblower Cruises, was out on his daily tour with a boat full of nature watchers when he spotted the massive group of dolphins.
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‘I’ve seen a lot of stuff out here… but this is the biggest I’ve ever seen, ever,’ he told the local NBC affiliate.
Dolphins typically travel in groups of anywhere between 15 and 200 which are called pods.
What Mr Dutra spotted on Thursday however is best described as a super mega pod given the astonishing size of the group.
He estimated that the trail of dolphins was seven miles long and five miles wide, and he was able to steer the boat alongside them for over an hour.
Experts are unable to pinpoint any specific reason as to why so many of the mammals were traveling together on this particular night, but noted the presence of a huge US Navy submarine base nearby.
‘They’re definitely social animals, they stick together in small groups. But sometimes, the schools come together,’ marine expert Sarah Wilkin told NBC.
At the end of February in 2012, an unspecified group of dolphins was spotted swimming about 65 miles north of San Diego, implying that there may be an unacknowledged migratory pattern.