DOLPHINS: Swimming on the West-Coast of Mauritius

DOLPHINS: Swimming on the West-Coast of Mauritius

Sunday 6:00AM. The alarm rang way too early for a weekend. But what was coming up was totally worth it!

Early in the morning we hopped on a boat in Black River and set out for a swim with Dolphins. Every morning, these smart salt water mammals can be found close to Tamarin and Albion.

That day, the Mauritian winter tried to show us that it knows what bad weather looks like. Lots of clouds, mist and rainbows were covering the land up to the shore.
Luckily for us the weather off the coast was better: Less cloudy, no rain and t-shirt worthy temperatures.

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In Mauritius you can find two different types of dolphins. Spinner- and Bottlenose- Dolphins come to sleep in the safety of the bays on the West Coast. In the morning they stay in the bays for a couple of hours to play around and occasionally hunt some flying fish.
The two kinds of dolphins can be told apart by some distinctive features. In general, Spinner Dolphins are the smaller race. With up to 2.35m compered to up to 4m for the Bottlenose Dolphin, the Spinners are very agile. That’s what also got them their name, as the animals like to do spin jumps for fun. Bottlenose Dolphins are of a rather consistent lite grey color, whereas Spinner Dolphins have a darker gray on their top, followed by a lighter grey stripe below and a nearly white belly.

On this Sunday morning, we met a large group of Spinner Dolphins. Maybe 100 or more animals were swimming next to and below our boat. We found the water to be warmer than the weather had indicated and jumped in.

Now all we had to do is to keep up with the dolphins! On previous encounters I had with these animals, this was easier said then done. If they are not interested in seeing you, the dolphins are gone in seconds. 

But on this day they were really calm. They swam right besides us, dived below us and even showed interest in who we where. Sometimes they were of into the distance. Only to turn around or be replaced by another group.

Now an then, I actually felt they were to close to me. Especially the time that one of them was swimming right in front of me and decided to do his morning business... 

My action cam was diving with me, of course! Below you can have a glimpse of what we experienced that day. Including the "situation" I mentioned above.

@ Michael S.