26 July 2009
Delphi's Dolphins 11, 19-25 July
The last three weeks here have been the best of my life, for the first time I feel like I have done something to help benefit the world. During the last three weeks I have helped Silvia, Aina and Giovanni with their research on dolphins in the Korinthian Gulf in Greece. The project is not by any means a dolphin sighting program, we do not just go out and take pictures of dolphins and then head back. In fact when we are out on the ocean the team looks for dolphins and documents everything from their behavior towards each other to their respiration pattern. The information that the team collects helps the research team with their quest to make the Gulf a protected area for dolphins and other marine wildlife. For me the project has taught me more about dolphins than any class room could teach me. I have also gained research experience, since my field of study is based on research I have seen and learned how field research works. The project also opened my eyes to the dangers of overfishing and ways in which I myself can help protect our oceans. Being here has been the best experience of my life, for once I am helping benefit the world and learned more about myself in the process. Silvia, Aina, and Giovanni are so cool I had a great time working with them and many others who volunteered for the project. I hope to return to the project next year and continue to help the team with their research.
Sara Heaton, USA
The feelings and emotions that I have felt in the last week are very hard to express in writing, but I will try to do my best ☺. Having the privilege to be with these divine creatures while they are in their natural habitat is truly remarkable. But seeing the people working on this project, and the way they love, respect and are very serious about what they are doing is even more important. They opened my eyes to the problems that we shall face very soon (if not already) if something is not done by all of us to help dolphins and marine life. Before leaving, I was a bit nervous about spending a week with strangers. But meeting, getting to know and living with new people, and how quickly one feels at home and so comfortable is amazing. The cooking (oh no!!!) makes everything worthwhile (hahaha). And this being my last night here I will really miss it all. Thank you so much Silvia, Giovanni and Aina for this wonderful and unforgetable week. I will definetely be coming back home to Galaxidi very soon.
The experience this week was much more interesting and personal than I could have imagined. A big thank you to the Tethys team, Giovanni, Silvia and Aina. The dolphin sightings were spectacular. Wishing you continued success with your future efforts.
Giovanni, Silvia and Aina… Thank you so much for making this such an amazing, unforgettable week. We really have loved every minute of it. We both feel like we have learned so much in the last week, and our only regret is that we didn’t book another week with you guys! The research you do here is really incredible and we have definitely come away wanting to do our own bit to conserve marine ecosystems… (Amie will never eat tuna again!) Good luck with all of your future research. Thanks again.
Hannah and Amie, UK