Bottlenose Dolphins are always an exciting sighting!

Anne Mary Schaeffer was at Manchester Beach when she spotted a half-dozen Bottlenose Dolphins.

Bottlenose dolphins by Anne Mary Schaefer

Bottlenose Dolphins, also called Bottle-nosed Dolphins or Gray Dolphins, are extremely intelligent. They seem to be fascinated with humans. They can grow to thirteen feet in length.

Here are a couple of photos of these dolphins, taken by Allen Vinson off of Walk-on Beach on The Sea Ranch.

Bottle-nosed Dolphins by Allen Vinson

Here these dolphins are surfing a wave.

Bottle-nosed Dolphins riding a wave by Allen Vinson

Thanks to Anne Mary and Allen for allowing me to share their photos with you here.

2 thoughts on “Bottlenose Dolphins are always an exciting sighting!

  1. Jeanne, these are very intriguing bottlenose dolphin photos. I am part of a team of dolphin researchers that has been cataloging the individual bottlenose dolphins in the San Francisco Bay and Marin and Sonoma County coasts. It would be great if we could get the full resolution photos to see if we could make a match to our catalog of 84 adults dolphins. We have never had a photo of a dolphin as far north as Mendocino before, but with the warm water off our coast lately, it does not surprise us.

    The story of the California coastal bottlenose dolphins is interesting. Before 1983, there were no coastal bottlenose dolphins of Northern California, but that year a big El Niño brought warm water and the dolphins up from Southern California. When the water cooled, the dolphins stayed, and took up residence in Monterey Bay. They have been slowly moving north in the years since then. By 2007 we were seeing them in San Francisco Bay. And now they are regular off Marin and Sonoma (to Bodega Bay). Almost all the individual dolphins we see here are known from Montery Bay, and a few of our local animals were originally seen years ago in San Diego. Fortunately, they live a long time...up to 50 years or more.

    Please contact me so that I can get the the dates of the photos, and if I can reach the photographers, we might learn more by comparing the unique dorsal fin silhouettes to see if we can recognize certain individual dolphins.

    Bill Keener
    Golden Gate Cetacean Research

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