December 04, 2003

Dusky Dolphins


Yesterday I inherited a splendid Mitsubishi Lancer from Avis to do the road until Kaikoura. Massive difference with the old wreck I had before and for next to half the price as it is a relocation ! Once in town, I went to see the Dolphins Encounter office to see if there was any possibility to do a trip the next day. Unfortunately, everything was booked until December 13 !! There was a stand-by list just in case some people were cancelling or not showing up. I did not add my name on it and continue walking in town. A few minutes later when passing on the other side of the road in front of the shop, the lady ran after me from the shop to tell me that someone just called to cancel for tomorrow. So if I wanted, I could join. You bet ! So today..wake up at 5AM, briefing at 5:40AM and here we go, looking for dusky dolphins around Kaikoura.

The Dusky Dolphin is a very small dolphin, very playful and who loves to do jump and tricks. He is also very inquisitive.

We found quickly a huge pod of dolphins, about 300 individuals in group. Basically you had dolphins everywhere. So here we are gliding in the water with a 7mm wetsuit, fins and mask. An obvious possibility of the presence of dolphins here might be that it is full of krills (small shrimps), so it might give them plenty of food (actually I'm not sure it's their diet, but anyway )

I was able to take a few shots underwater with the dolphins that I hope to post very soon. I wish I had a DSLR, with the shutter lag of a normal digital it's virtually impossible to get a good front shot. As the visibility is barely 6-8m the time you see the dolphin coming toward you, you press the shutter and he is already circling around you when the picture is taken !

I'm right now staying in Picton at Sequoia Lodge. Picton is the ferry terminal for the inter-island ferry, so I will cross to Wellington very soon.

Last minute note: I just checked the pictures on my laptop and I retained myself from screaming or committing seppuku as the result is absolutely terrible. There is a terrible grain and blur courtesy of the low light conditions at this time. I was around 1/100 f1.8 at ISO64 or around 1/250 f1.8 ISO200 but this is terribly insufficient in this condition for fast moving subjects in low water visibility. Even with the wide angle lens it was impossible to frame the subject

I will be back with a DSLR and a 15mm !. One day.

Sunrise in Kaikoura Sunrise in Kaikoura Sunrise in Kaikoura Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins - Terrible shot that I cannot really explain except by low light conditions. :-( Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins from the boat Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins from the boat Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins from the boat Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins from the boat Kaikoura Dusky Dolphins from the boat

 
Posted by stephane at December 4, 2003 11:34 PM
Comments

Cela doit être terrible de se retrouver au milieu des dolphins. Dommage que ton apn soit limité, car les photos auraient pu être superbes
Le cadrage est très bien, voir même que c'est frustrant que ton équipement ne soit pas à la hauteur

Posted by: Fabrice on December 7, 2003 01:11 PM

Des moments, je me pose la question de savoir si c'est plus l'equipement que le photographe, mais on va dire que c'est l'equipement. J'ai essaye de switcher en ISO200 mais je voulais pas 400 car le bruit est assez terrible. Apres visualisation j'aurais mieux fait d'essayer, ca aurait pas pu etre pire. Prochain objectif (c'est le cas de le dire) un boulot qui paye et un DSLR. Avec un peu de chance je pourrais faire du ISO1600 avec un bruit equivalent a du ISO200 d'un appareil 'normal'.

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