30 September 2008

Kalamos, 21-27 September

When arriving at Mytikas, a small fishermen village, the first sensations that you feel are the calm, the piece of mind of the places. The beauty of the landscape completely catches your attention! Even if not speaking English, charming, smiling and friendly people welcome you, trying to help you and give you advices.

While I wait for the boat that will bring me to the island of Kalamos, the other volunteers arrive one by one and we begin to chat and know each other. In the meantime, I start questioning myself and the anxiety is coming: “Why did I decide to come here? Will the atmosphere be good in the group? Did I choose the right program? For me, it is like a bet.” I will get the answers soon…
I chose to be a volunteer in this program to discover how the project is managed by the researchers and what are the impacts of their surveys, to have a human-being relationship experience, and of course to see the dolphins. And now, today, I can say: “Yes the bet has been won”.

The week spent in Kalamos was really nice and unforgettable.
All-important subjects of the project have been discussed and the atmosphere was really funny and friendly. The harmony in the group was real, everyone participating in the daily activities. It was really pleasant to live in Kalamos, a beautiful island untouched by mass tourism. And dolphins… it is difficult to explain what you feel when you see them, you have to live this experience to understand it. On the boat, we were like children, shouting each time we saw one of them! We tried to count them: one, two, three, four, five, six! We realized that we were surrounded by them, far away or just near the boat, and also below the boat. We participated in the data collection necessary for the survey of the researchers, which was really exciting. Then we followed the dolphins, and we were simply spectators of their life in their environment, in freedom, and tried to not disturb them. It was really fantastic and dolphins are fabulous animals.

Many thanks to the three researchers Stefano, Susanna and Mauro, passionate people engaged in cetacean research. They took the necessary time to explain us their project, their message, their work, and involve us in the activities. It was a pleasure to meet people so involved in a beautiful cause, having such interesting, exciting and useful job. They were understanding, patient and respectful. Many thanks to the volunteers: Suzanne, Bridgette, Françoise and Gabriele for their cheerfulness and discussions. Thanks to all for the good recipes and funny dinners!

Isabelle, France


Vorrei ringraziare Stefano, Susie e Mauro per l’impegno, il rispetto dell’ambiente, la professionalità e la simpatia. Nella mia seconda esperienza in Tethys il tempo (meteorologico) non è stato dalla nostra parte, ma nonostante ciò torno a casa con un’altra esperienza piena di belle sensazioni. L’ultimo giorno madre natura ci ha regalato una giornata piena di sole e l’avvistamento di numerosi delfini, davvero meraviglioso! Sarà vera la teoria dei desideri che diventano realtà soltanto se ci si crede davvero? Mi convinco sempre di più che sia vero e, in base a questa convinzione, credo che tutti coloro che lavorano e aderiscano a Tethys (e a tutte le idee e i coraggiosi progetti che valorizzano la vita) contribuiscano a un mondo migliore. Auguri a tutti, continuate così!

Gabriele, Switzerland/Italy


What did I expect from a week spent with the Ionian Dolphin Project? 1) a chance to learn about dolphins and their conservation, 2) a chance to meet new friends, 3) a chance to get involved in a research project that could benefit the environment and 4) a chance to experience a different country. Did the week fulfil these expectations? Yes and more...

We did see dolphins – although, due to weather conditions, we had to wait until the last day for a 'proper' sighting. The weather restricted our chances on the other days. But it was worth waiting for.
The house is basic but comfortable. Our group got on extremely well, contributing to the team effort both in the house and on the boat. I was sad to leave at the end of the week.

Bridgette, U.K.

27 September 2008

Origami whale

If you want to say “stop” to whaling carried out by the Japanese fleet, go to the dedicated Greenpeace web site. You can send a message to the Japanese Prime Minister to ask him to stop 'scientific' whaling and the cetacean meat trade... and express your creativity.

You can make your own ‘origami whale’: choose the paper you prefer, add details and a voice to your animal, write a message on top and let it swim in the ocean. From the coasts of Australia - a major whaling antagonist - to the waters of Japan, your whale will travel to bring your important message. After some days you can even check where your animal is on the map.

Don’t forget to send invitations to your friends asking them to embrace the cause, as nearly 50,000 people have done so far.

Francesca Zardin

26 September 2008

An unusual flying encounter

It was my first week for this season, and I was really happy to be back on board of the Tethys research vessel ‘Pelagos’. Thinking that a second year team member should work very carefully, I was trying to do my best in every task, starting from the sighting shifts. So during the winter I studied bird identification, too, since we also collect information on their presence during the navigation.

Herring gull, shearwater - ok, these are easy. Cormorant, puffin - too rare, I’ll never be so lucky. Audouin's gull, tern… ok I’ve got it!

I was feeling pretty confident about the species names, and during my shifts I was eager to report any flying fledged... Encounter: two adults herring gulls... Encounter: three shearwaters...

The principal investigator for the week was teasing me, but I was playing the ornithologist with conviction, so I persisted. Encounter: one tern...

Then, while I was on my sighting shift again, something strange appeared flying through my field of vision. Small, orange head, black and white dotted wings… Hoopoe! I suddenly screamed.

However, that one wasn't quite within its typical habitat. Upupa epops is a typical bird of cultivated grounds... what was it doing so far from the coast?

Francesca Zardin

Photo by Vezon Thierry / photo.net

24 September 2008

Whale Trackers

Whale Trackers
, a series of the five educational documentary films, is going to be officially presented at the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) World Conservation Congress in Barcelona, Spain.

Whale Trackers examines the threats that individual species face, and focuses on the people who are making a difference to preserve the animals, by connecting their fate to the health of their respective habitats.

It is based on five episodes about 1) the unique natural history of the Mediterranean Sea and the whales and dolphins that live in this area, 2) the amazing images of the elusive and endangered sperm whales that live along the Hellenic Trench, 3) the foolish illegal driftnet fishery that is putting marine life at risk, 4) the reasons of the disappearance of the wonderful Mediterranean common dolphins, 5) the importance of establishing marine protected areas.

The first and fourth episodes have been done in collaboration with Tethys researchers working in the Ligurian and Ionian Seas.

The video by Chris and Genevieve Johnson (earthOCEAN) will be shown on October 8th, during the IUCN conference, as part of Conservation Cinema, a selection of about 50 movies that showcase examples of successful conservation projects and depict stunning wildlife images and scenery.

If you are not going to attend the IUCN congress you can still watch the videos online... don’t miss them!

Silvia Bonizzoni

More information about the IUCN congress in Barcelona

Watch the videos

23 September 2008

New paper on cetaceans and global warming

A new paper about the possible relationship between global warming and cetaceans is now available. Tethys researcher Arianna Azzellino, together with other colleagues, published "Biological consequences of global warming: does sea surface temperature affect cetacean distribution in the western Ligurian Sea?".

The work focuses on three cetacean species - striped dolphin, fin whale and sperm whale and is based on research done between 1996 and 2000 in a study area of 20,000 Km2.

The authors conclude that in the western Ligurian Sea sea surface temperature represents a key factor for the habitat selection by these three cetacean species and recommend further investigation to assess how global climate change may affect the structure of cetacean communities living in this area.

Silvia Bonizzoni

Azzellino A., Gaspari S.A., Airoldi S., Lanfredi C. 2008. Biological consequences of global warming: does sea surface temperature affect cetacean distribution in the western Ligurian Sea? Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 88(6):1145–1152.

22 September 2008

Autumn in Kalamos

Autumn has arrived in Kalamos. This week was not the best in terms of weather and sea conditions, but we could try out something new.

The rough sea did not allow doing the surveys in the first days, so we were forced to stay in the island, which was not a punishment at all. This was a good opportunity for a long walk to Kalamos village and to discover the beauty of the island.

After the rain, the air was filled up with the scent of pines, so the walk was pleasant and refreshing. The nature was pretty much alive, lots of insects and birds came out after the rain to get some sunshine. We even spotted a pair of peacocks! We did not realise that time was passing because the view was exceptional and nature was shining in its original colours. The time was just perfect for taking photos, and this day has been a gift for those who - like me - enjoy nature photography.

Despite the sea conditions, we were scanning the sea surface from our land observational point and spending peaceful moments listening to the songs of birds. We saw cormorants drying themselves on the rocks of Episkopi harbour and we could identify some forest birds and pheasants based on their songs. In the backyard of our house there has been a continuous flow of visitors: goats, roosters, pheasants and wonderful butterflies. Living in Episkopi really feels like being a part of nature.

Our hope to spot dolphins increased and finally, on the last day, we had a great sighting with bottlenose dolphins and the group could try out their data collection skills. At the end of the sighting, everyone was ready to take their own photos... and realize that taking photos of dolphins in the wild is not so easy ☺

Overall, this week was full of surprises. Rain, sunshine and strong wind, but there was a good mood and the time we spent together was very pleasant, cooking a lot and listening to the ‘unforgettable’ music of the 80’s during dinner preparation, which created a special atmosphere.

Zsuzsanna Pereszlenyi

Kalamos, 14-20 September

“Ready?” “Ready!” “Hold on” e siamo partiti. I quel momento ho sentito che tutti i miei pensieri rimanevano lì sulla terra ferma, mentre il resto di me andava verso quell’isola sconosciuta che ho subito sentito come casa... In questi giorni non ho dovuto pensare a niente, mi sono rilassata tantissimo e soprattutto ho imparato un sacco di cose. Anche se siamo state un po’ sfortunate con il tempo, direi proprio che l’ultimo giorno abbiamo recuperato. Credo che descrivere le sensazioni provate in compagnia dei delfini sia inutile, non saprei esprimermi adeguatamente. Voglio solo dire che se potessi, starei qui ‘a tempo indeterminato’! E’ stata un’esperienza profonda che spero proprio di poter ripetere. Un grazie speciale a Susie e Stefano che mi hanno fatta sentire perfettamente a mio agio. Grazie a tutti.

Aurora, Italy


Che bello trovarsi tra amici e condividere la stessa passione. Formidabile, ci siamo conosciuti da poco ed è come se ci conoscessimo da sempre. La pace che il mare ti sa infondere è tangibile anche qui alla base di Episkopi, a casa. Sì, la mia casa per una settimana, il luogo dove si imparano cose molte importanti, ma soprattutto dove si impara a convivere con persone che provengono da vari paesi e culture, con abitudini e comportamenti diversi. Una palestra di vita molto importante che insegna che la condivisione e la tolleranza sono il segreto per un futuro migliore, un futuro di sorrisi e di pace. Grazie a Tethys e ai volontari che hanno condiviso con me questa settimana. Un sincero augurio di gioia e serenità.

Anna, Italy


I have really enjoyed my time in Episkopi. I did feel a little down-hearted at the beginning of the week with the rainy weather, however this extra time did enable us to enjoy a long walk to Kalamos and thus explore some more of this beautiful island. We also had more relaxing days and ate very very well!! I enjoyed the lectures we had each day (sounds strange eh!); it was very interesting as a Vet to find out more about dolphin behaviour and ecology and discover about the risks of overfishing. The last day was definitely the high-point of the trip. Lovely sunshine, calm seas and finally a dolphin sighting!!! It was very interesting to get involved in data collection, the theory of it is very different to doing it in the field! Dolphins are very addictive animals to observe, you could watch them all day and never get bored. I would definitely be interested in doing a research project like this myself in the future! What a job!! Thank you to all involved!

Rebecca, U.K.


Due to bad weather conditions, unfortunately we were unable to go and look for dolphins for the firsts days. We tried so many times, but the sea just would not let us look for the dolphins. Instead however, we were able to walk to the village of Kalamos and investigate the main part of the island seeing stunning scenery and beautiful beaches as we walked. The disappointment was soon cleared on the last day. We saw many dolphins, which was an amazing experience as we were able to see them in the wild, watching them eat, play and rest. It was fascinating to see how Susie and Stefano collect their data and it was good to be able to help them to do so. Each day Stefano would give us a lecture about the different aspects of dolphin life including behaviour, data collection and the increasing problem of over fishing (something that I was not really aware of before!!). The lectures were not only informative, but enjoyable as well. I did find the experience thoroughly interesting and definitely I am glad I have done it! Thank you to everyone, especially Stefano and Susie

Siobhan, U.K.


The sighting we had was the highlight of the trip. I didn’t realise we would see so many dolphins in one group, probably about 20. It was really interesting to see their different behaviour and watch how they interact with each other. I also enjoyed seeing different wildlife in the sea such as Cindy, the sea turtle that lives in the harbour! It was frustrating to wake up on the first days and see the rain but today has definitely made up for those times. The lectures and work have been informative and given me a lot to think about. I feel the experience has increased my ability to understand why sustaining the oceans is such an important issue. It has been nice to meet people from different backgrounds and share new recipes and ways of living. The cats were a welcoming addition to the house as well

Chloe, U.K.

20 September 2008

Dolphins of Greece, 11-19 September

We were 5 ladies from the West Coast of the US, yet we all had the pleasure of meeting in the beautiful town of Vonista, Greece. Even though we had to miss 3 days of going out do our research due to weather, I believe the sightings we did have made us all have a greater appreciation of dolphins and the research taking place here. I am so grateful my company, Mitsubishi International Corp., gave me this fantastic opportunity to not only visit Greece but to learn about dolphins,marine life and their associated ecosystems. I felt the lectures greatly added to the experience and increased my knowledge concerning these subjects. I also greatly appreciated being a part of such a great team : Gigi and her quest for her “Greek God”; Stevie with her calm attitude and very vast travel experiences plus her inborn GPS abilities; Dianne, my teammate and our struggles in attempting to use the computer and determining if we had a match with certain dolphins pictures; Rosie,our “younger sister” who I had the pleasure of meeting for the first time at LAX and our “Amazing Race” quest to reach Vonitsa in time after the closure of Newark airport on the day of our departure to Greece; Mauro, with his fantastic meals plus his assistance with our computer assignments; Posi, the greatest mascot ever. But, I believe my greatest thanks should go to Joan for all I learned from him during this trip even though I was a novice in this field. I know this may have tried his patience at times but I definitely will leave this experience with more knowledge in this area. I also enjoyed the talks and friendship we shared trying to come up with meals to cook every night plus trying the Italian and Greek red wines at dinner.

Lija, USA


Good accomodations, well organized training for project, knowledgeable and passionately committed P.I. Beautiful setting, great interaction with the dolphins. Compatible team members. Mauro and Joan both great cooks! More than met my expectations.

Dianne, USA


Fantastic views, not only of dolphins but of the area, Greece is beautiful! I would recommend this project to others looking for an education in dolphins and in fishing practices.

Gigi, USA


Participation in this project was a very positive experience for me. It has left me wanting to participate in more Earthwatch Projects in the future. I appreciate Joan and Mauro’s patience and willingness to share their knowledge.

Stevie, USA


This was my first Earthwatch project, and it was an exceedingly positive experience for me. Although the youngest of the team, it was quite a pleasure being part of this extensively traveled group. The food was great -- I have never had quite so much pasta over such a short period of time... I laugh of course; the preparation of the meals became a daily discussion among the group. The faciltiy was great – very clean and cozy. Our research assistant Mauro made me laugh on a daily basis, with his Italian charm and sweetness. Joan, our PI was a good “task master” and kept our group together throughout our journey. I acquired such affection for him... he was my friend and a great guide on this journey. I would recommend this expedition to those seeking a better understanding of not only ocean conservation and the dolphin species, but the oceanic Greek culture itself. It is breathtakingly beautiful here, and I am leaving with a greater sense of environmental awareness, which I will carry with me as I travel back to my home in California.

Rosalie, USA

19 September 2008

Monbiot on climate change

"If the biosphere is wrecked, it will be done by nice, well-meaning, cosmopolitan people who accept the case for cutting emissions, but who won’t change by one iota the way they live."

George Monbiot


Monbiot on green consumerism

"No political challenge can be met by shopping."

George Monbiot


Eco-Junk - Green consumerism will not save the biosphere

15 September 2008

Unexpected common dolphin sighting

That morning did not start in the usual way. Annalise came into my room all excited saying “Bottlenose dolphins in the channel! Hurry up! We are leaving in a few minutes!”. Everybody was thrilled and we left the port hoping to find them soon.

The sunrise seemed magic as sunrays penetrated the clouds above Kalamos. Silent everywhere, even nature had not woken up yet, but our attention was focused on the duty to find the dolphins. A tiny little white spot in the distance “Look at 11! Could it be dolphins? Let’s check!” As we got closer, our assumption had become a fact. Yes, dolphins! A big group porpoising at high speed. But wait a minute… these are not bottlenose, but common dolphins! It was unbelievable. We quickly set up the equipment, and data collection had started. Soon we were surrounded by the group. This was my the first time with common dolphins, and it just felt great.

Annalise started manoeuvring in a way that could facilitate the photo-identification. I picked up the tape recorder and started recording behavioural data. Everyone was counting the animals as they surfaced. Six, twelve, sixteen, eighteen! Around twenty common dolphins! There were juveniles in the group. Moreover, one… no, two calves, and a very small newborn. It was unbeliavable to see such a tiny dolphin, always surfacing with its mother and almost attached to her.

As they approached the island of Meganisi, we noticed a flock of birds. Maybe some surface feeding was going to occur? Quickly we prepared the equipment for the collection of fish scales. But then we realised that the feeding animals were not dolphins but large tuna! They were feeding near the surface, chasing a school of fish with seagulls joining the frenzy. They were around one meter in length, occasionally jumping out of the water. But we needed to follow our dolphin group, so we recorded the position and left the big predators.

In the meantime the dolphins had become calmer and seemed to be looking for a place to rest along the coast. Annalise manouvered very carefully to avoid any disturbance. Some dolphins where resting at the surface while others started to socialize, particularly the juveniles. Then the whole group got active again and started travelling.

We could collect a large amount of data, which definitely makes a researcher happy and satisfied. However, this sighting was more then just data collection. The fact that some of these rare animals are again around Kalamos filled our hearts with joy. These animals are so important for us.

Zsuzsanna Pereszlenyi

14 September 2008

Kalamos, 7-13 September

I have had an amazing time here in Kalamos with the Tethys team. We have been such a lucky group, seeing a common dolphin, two different sightings of bottlenose dolphins and a sea turtle swimming along the surface of the water within the first three days of our week! Even on the days when there have been no dolphin sightings, it was brilliant riding around on the boat and spending some time in the tavernas in the different villages. Carrying out the research on the boat has been valuable experience for the future, and the work back at the house although hard at times (identifying the dorsal fins!) has been very enjoyable. The social atmosphere of the house has been a very happy one with a lot of time snorkelling in the sea, playing volleyball and talking into the night over dinner and drinks. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time here and would love to come back and do the project again in future years. You cannot help but smile when you are spending time on such a beautiful island and working with such amazing animals. Thank you to Stefano and Susie for making my week so enjoyable. I hope to see you again and that all of your hard work continues to be successful.

Rachael, U.K.


Non è semplice spiegare in poche righe una settimana trascorsa sull’isola di Kalamos, ma è stata sicuramente un’esperienza unica. Vivere a stretto contatto con persone straordinarie per una settimana può solo lasciarti un ricordo indelebile. Abbiamo formato un team di 5 ragazze niente male direi e, anche se la lingua risulta un ostacolo per chi come me non è abituata a parlare in inglese, siamo riuscite a collaborare, ridere e scherzare per tutto il tempo trascorso insieme. Posso scrivere un grazie enorme a Susie e Stefano, innanzitutto per la loro professionalità e per tutto quello che ci hanno trasmesso, ma soprattutto per la generosità e la capacità di farci sentire a nostro agio come in una grande famiglia. Il secondo giorno mi sembrava di essere qui già da una vita! Una casa accogliente, tutti con compiti distribuiti e tutti che collaborano in pulizie e nella preparazione della cena... neppure a casa mia collaboriamo così bene! Non posso certo dire che sia stato tutto semplice, anzi, si lavora parecchio, sveglia presto, occhi puntati sul mare alla ricerca di qualsiasi cosa si muova, ma le soddisfazioni sono talmente tante che tutto diventa un piacere! Straordinario, straordinari i delfini, straordinario (e cervellotico!) tutto il lavoro che si nasconde dietro quello che sembra soltanto una ricerca in mare! Taglia, confronta e identifica i delfini… c’è da impazzire! Ma poi c’è il tempo libero che ovviamente si passa sulla spiaggia e con un mare così non puoi certo tirarti indietro… un mare talmente limpido e calmo che invoglia a nuotare all’infinito! E poi bagno notturno con il plancton illuminato dalla luna che fa brillare tutto quello che si muove!

Erica, Italy


It has been a very exciting and eventful week for everyone as we had lots of encounters with the marine life in the area. This includes the rare common dolphin (on the first day!), several bottlenose dolphins, swordfish and even two sea turtles. I found the experience from working on a research project extremely interesting and rewarding. It was eye opening to see how much effort and dedication the team put in to collecting the data, and just how passionate they were about it. The atmosphere in the evening after all the hard work from during the day was very relaxed, giving you the chance to really appreciate the beauty of Kalamos Island and to enjoy the company of the other volunteers. Thank you, I have had a wonderful week and I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in a demanding but rewarding conservation project.

Samantha, U.K.


Just an emotions' river:

There aren’t word to describe how I feel…
I have to live the place were I found happiness and rest
I have to live the place where paece and quietness rules…

Into a mirror I saw the power of nature, behind a glass I saw the sands beating with the waves, under the fog of the myth I saw the islands rising from waters.
Into a breath I saw a dolphin whispering his freedom,
in a turtle’s eyes I saw all the life of the sea.

This morning a swordfish was cutting the sea and like a knife he reached my heart to remain.
In just a week I heard birds singing at the sunset, waves rise with the wind and saw fishes jump out of the water, riminding us how powerful a little creature can be, dolphins reach the sky and shine under the sun. Fish fly over the sea’s line…

For all this things I have to be thankful. First of all to Susie and Stefano for guiding me in this amazing adventure, to the other people here with me sharing with me the many emotions of the week, to the nature, the only thing I believe in and that never disappoint me, and to dolphins, to exist, to make me feel alive with only a breath, to give me so many and deep emotions, to make me hope and to made me learn that, maybe, life with them has an aim…

So thanks to this amazing project that made me feel alive once more, because there’s nothing more beautiful than the sea, if you really live it, as we've done this week!

I really think that I'm gonna cry every time, while opening my eyes I will found the world where I live so grey and so distant from all this… the sea and the peace…

Thank you so much to everybody.

Ramona, Italy


It is so difficult to write about this days in Kalamos with the Ionian Dolphin Project, I felt so many emotions that I could never imagine when I decided to come here… I really feel like at home here, there is a special atmosphere, ‘our researchers’ Stefano and Susie treat us like friends in the free time and are very patient with us during the work. I feel as I have known them and the other girls who are here with me (Ramona, Erica, Rachael and Sammy) for years, but I staid with them only a few days. Yes, I don’t speak a lot, but this is my nature and my English is not so good… but I really feel well here and with them.

Irene, Italy

12 September 2008

The king of sushi

A nice 13min documentary by CBS News on tuna fishing and fattening in the Mediterranean.

The King Of Sushi - Growing Demand For Sushi Is Having A Big Impact On The Bluefin Population


11 September 2008

Discards, discards and discards

A UK trawler filmed throwing five tonnes of fish overboard has caused international outrage.

Watch the video and read article by John Vidal / Guardian at:

07 September 2008

Kalamos, July, 31st - August, 6th

I would like to thank all the people who made “Premio di Laurea Rossana Majorca” possible, thanks to which I could participate to this wonderful experience with Tethys. In few days I saw bottlenose dolphins doing acrobatic jumps out of the water and coming to have a look at our boat, then a big group of common dolphins moving fast to the coast and then rest for a while… and they were so close to us... I had never seen dolphins in the wild so close before! It was fantastic! We saw also several newborns trying to swim as adults, and jumping as well, they were really cute! It was very exciting helping the researchers to collect data during the sighting, everybody tried to make its best, I took also some underwater videos from the boat and I hope they could be useful for the dolphins identification! I had really good time during this week, the place where we stayed was awesome, the sea here is fantastic, the weather was fine and the group was really amazing!! ;-) I thanks a lot Annalise, Susie and Silvia of Tethys that are carrying on the project with extreme passion and they were professional as well as very nice with all of us! I suggest to everybody who loves the sea and its creatures to try this experience!

Jessika, Italy


Questo posto è indescrivibile, il panorama è fantastico, l’acqua è cristallina ma soprattutto... in cinque giorni abbiamo sempre visto i delfini, siamo stati il gruppo più fortunato di questa estate... ‘the luckiest girls’. Già dal primo giorno siamo riuscite a fare due avvistamenti: qui nel canale tra Episkopi e Mytikas, e poi ad Amvrakikos, quindi, nonostante la sveglia all’alba, ne è valsa veramente la pena! Dopo tre giorni di avvistamenti di tursiopi, un gruppo di una ventina di delfini comuni ci ha regalato grandi emozioni! Vi ringraziamo di averci dato l’opportunità di fare questa esperienza, per averci insegnato un po’ di inglese e i nomi di tutti i delfini avvistati. Non dimentichero’ mai la mitica ‘jelly fish’ e la prima volta abbiamo visto un pesce volante! Davvero tutto ‘very exciting’!

Ilaria and Arianna, Italy


This conservation holiday was truly an incredible experience. Observing wild dolphins in their natural environment was amazing – so much better than I could have ever imagined. Not only was I able to observe the dolphins’ behaviour, but also, thanks to the Tethys’ researchers, I was able to understand what it might mean too. It was a great privilege to be allowed to help Tethys with their research. Collecting data enabled me to learn so much about dolphins, and only increased my admiration for these beautiful and intelligent creatures. My group was particularly lucky, because we got to see common dolphins as well as bottlenose dolphins. I saw first-hand bottlenose dolphins glide effortlessly beside our boat only to then leap spectacularly in the air. And I got to see a group of common dolphins socialise with each other and race through the water. However, it was not just watching the dolphins that made this trip unforgettable. There was also the added bonus of seeing other marine life too. I got to see massive tuna jumping into the air, flying fish skim the surface of the water, and big jellyfish float gracefully passed our boat. What topped off the whole experience for me was the fact that I got to see quite a few Greek islands. We were able to stop off for a quick break on these islands. The island on which we actually stayed is particularly stunning – a real undiscovered place of great beauty. What’s more it is great for snorkelling, and has some really scenic beaches. I would recommend this holiday to everyone, and would just like to take the opportunity to thank the Tethys’ researchers, Annalise, Susie and Silvia for teaching me so much and making this trip so special.

Rita, U.K./Italy

06 September 2008

Tethys meets MOm

During a pleasant meeting held on the Greek island of Patmos - a true paradise on Earth - Giuseppe Notarbartolo di Sciara and Giovanni Bearzi, respectively the Honorary president and the President of Tethys, have recently held an informal two-day meeting with Spyros Kotomatas, the Executive director of MOm/Hellenic Society for the Study and Protection of the Monk Seal.

The meeting confirmed the good relationship between Tethys and MOm and opened the door to future collaboration between these organizations, that have been actively promoting marine conservation for two decades. 


Photo: (left to right) Giuseppe Notarbartolo di Sciara, Spyros Kotomatas and Giovanni Bearzi