Photo: Pod of 100,000 dolphins spotted off California coast

February 21, 2013

Tomato on the vine. Photo by: David Besa.
Photo of the 'super mega-pod' by Antonio Ramirez, a passenger aboard the Hornblower Cruise that spotted the dolphins last Thursday.

A 'super mega-pod' of some 100,000 dolphins was spotted off the coast of San Diego last week, according to a report from NBC San Diego.

The giant pod of common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) was sighted by a tour boat last Thursday. The captain of the vessel, which is operated by Hornblower Cruises, said that the pod measured seven miles long and five miles wide.

“When you see something that is honestly truly beyond belief,” Captain Joe Dutra told NBC San Diego. “They were coming from all directions, you could see them from as far as the eye can see.”

“I’ve seen a lot of stuff out here... but this is the biggest I’ve ever seen, ever.”

Dutra said the boat followed the dolphins for more than an hour.

Marine mammal expert Sarah Wilkin with NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service told NBC San Diego that the large pod could indicate there is an abundance of food in the area.

“They’re attracted to kind of the same thing, they might wind up in the same place,” she was quoted as saying. “They’re definitely social animals, they stick together in small groups. But sometimes, the schools come together.”

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mongabay.com (February 21, 2013).

Photo: Pod of 100,000 dolphins spotted off California coast.