Subject: Unusual Occurence of a Pacific White Sided Dolphin in Northern Southeast Alaska (fwd)

Mike Williamson (pita@www1.wheelock.edu)
Tue, 16 Jun 1998 22:54:10 -0400 (EDT)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                      J. Michael Williamson
Principal Investigator-WhaleNet <http://whale.wheelock.edu>
                   Associate Professor-Science
  Wheelock College, 200 The Riverway, Boston, MA 02215
             voice: 617.734.5200, ext. 256
            fax:    617.734.8666, or 978.468.0073

          "Mother, Mother Ocean, I have heard your call,
   Wanted to sail upon your waters, since I was three feet tall"
                        Jimmy Buffett
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---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 13:37:02 -0700
From: MARMAM Editors <marmamed@UVic.CA>
Reply-To: Marine Mammals Research and Conservation Discussion
     <MARMAM@UVVM.UVIC.CA>
To: MARMAM@UVVM.UVIC.CA
Subject: Unusual Occurence of a Pacific White Sided Dolphin in Northern              Southeast Alaska (fwd)

From: Christopher Taylor <ctaylor@alaska.edu>

Unusual Occurrence of a Pacific White Sided Dolphin in Northern Southeast
Alaska

        I am writing to report an unusual occurrence of a Pacific White
Sided Dolphin in Letnikof Cove of Northern Lynn Canal, Southeast Alaska
(Haines, Alaska - Chil kat Inlet). Dall's porpoise and Harbor porpoise are
common, however sightings of Pac ific White Sided Dolphins in this area
are rare. Although I am not familiar with the behavior of Pacific White
Sided Dolphins, this individual's behavior seems unusu al for a wild
animal. It is particularly acrobatic and seems quite accustomed to humans.
It has been observed jumping from the surface while waving its flukes,
swimming on its side while waving its pectoral fins, fluke slapping,
"walking" vertically while being propelled by its flukes with most of its
body out of the water and perpendicular to the surface, swimming along
side boats while surfacing and giving two to three short blows at each
surfacing, and lying beside the docks while people stroke its sides and
back.  According to an article in the Haines Chilkat Valley News weekly
journal (May 28 ,1998), Kaja Brix of the National Marine Fisheries Service
suggested that the dolphin ca me inland in search of food or strayed from
a pod and advised people not to touch o r feed the animal. Brix said that
it would leave the area when it was ready.  A small pod of dolphins,
suspected of being Pacific White Sided Dolphins, were also spotted in an
adjacent area of the inlet.  Because of its friendly and acrobatic
behavior, it has been suggested by some onlookers that the dolphin escaped
or was released from a captive facility.  I would greatly appreciate any
information anyone may have on the behavior of Pacific White Sided
Dolphins that may shed light on this particular animal's behavior and
unusual visit to Letnikof Cove. Responses may be made to M ARMAM or
directly to me at ctaylor@alaska.net.  Thank you.  Christopher Taylor M.S.
Environmental Toxicology University of Alaska Fairbanks Home: P.O. Box
1317 Haines, Alaska 99827

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