Port Phillip is a remarkable home to about 120 bottlenose and 30 common dolphins.
It’s remarkable because many heavily-populated bays around the world are losing their resident dolphins because of human impacts on the environment.
Our bay has not only kept our long-term resident bottlenose dolphins, but it is the only situation like it in the world where common dolphins – that normally live in the open ocean – have become permanent residents (see research findings here).
Being a dolphin researcher is inspiring when a dolphin leaps in front of you, like in the top photo, and challenging when you can’t clearly work out what’s in its mouth. We thought it is part of a large fish, a plastic bag or a baseball cap! What do you think?
It’s also challenging when they vanish under the surface and all you can see from the research vessel are moving shadows. Then sometimes you hear a sharp “whoosh” sound as they surface to take a breath.
This compilation by Karl Bromelow from Moonraker Dolphin Swims provides a glimpse of their sub-surface antics.
The impacts from extremes of climate and population growth leave no room for complacency in protecting our dolphins and bays in the decades ahead.
You can become part of our work to protect these wonderful dolphins by donating to support our research and education programs.
The Dolphin Research Institute is registered with the Australian Charities and Not for Profit Commission as a charity. Donations of $2 and more are tax deductible.