Members of the environmental organization iSea decided to study the dolphins of Thermaikos Bay, registering each one individually with the help of a unique “fingerprint”, which is a dorsal fin in dolphins.
“Our Thermaikos Dolphin Project, which was launched in late spring with the support of SANIResort, includes the systematic monitoring of cetaceans in Thermaikos Bay using photo recognition, as well as training seminars for children to inform about the biodiversity of our country as a whole,” says APE- MPE head of educational programs at iSea Anastasia Haritu.
Two different species of dolphins have been found in the area. Like a human fingerprint, dolphins have a fin, she explains. And on the basis of this, the marine life is registered. Species and their abundance in the Thermaikos Bay area are also being studied.
“So far, two different dolphin species have been identified in the area: the rhinoceros (Tursiops truncatus) and the common dolphin (Delphinus delphis). Rhinos are the most common species in Greece and are often found in coastal areas. On the contrary, the population of common dolphins has declined dramatically in recent decades, making them rare. “
It is noted that the common dolphin is currently considered endangered, as the species has declined significantly in the Mediterranean Sea due to overfishing and death in fishing gear.
However, according to iSea, despite the overall decline in the Mediterranean population of this species, the North Aegean Sea is an area that even today has a fairly large number of cetaceans.
The rhino dolphin is often found off the coast of the northern Aegean, although its population in the Mediterranean has declined significantly and is now considered extinct.
The main goal of the program
According to Ms Haritu, “the main goal of the program is, on the one hand, a systematic study of the habitat and behavior of dolphins in the natural environment”.
“In addition, – continues the specialist, – we are interested in promoting the rich biodiversity of the region among local residents and tourists in order to ‘study’ it in the framework of scientific research, but also gives the public the opportunity to participate in the process itself and receive information about wildlife in the very the natural environment without interfering with it. “