Wednesday, August 03, 2005


I have a lot of pictures from the Shedd Aquarium. Today, I'll feature the dolphins.

For dolphin shows, the aquarium has a kind of indoor amphitheatre overlooking Lake Michigan and downtown Chicago. If you're there 25-30 minutes before the show, you'll have a seat to see the dolphins above water. Otherwise, you can go downstairs to watch them swim underwater. I did both. In a way, the view underwater was more interesting, but I didn't get any pictures because the water was such a murky blue. Photographing the dolphins above water also was a challenge, using a digital camera to capture fast-moving animals as they pop out of the water, in low light, without a flash. I wish the colors had come out better, but some of the shots aren't too bad.

Backward walk

These dolphins in Chicago are Pacific White-Sided Dolphins, which I'd never seen before, even at aquariums on the West Coast. As you can see in the picture above, they have a pronounced white coloring on the belly, under the chin, and along the side; a dark grey color on top; and streaks of lighter grey on the sides and from the top of the head past the dorsal fin. The color markings are their natural camouflage in the water.

Solo jump

Dolphin Dance.

A trainer and dolphin had a sort of dance routine worked out, in which the woman used hand signals and verbal cues for the dolphin to bob, shimmy, and twirl around to the rhythm of some music.

For the finale move...

Tailfins and feet up, and wave!

And the jump at the finale...

Tomorrow: some coral reefs, and Crabs!


At 8/03/2005 10:51 PM, Blogger peter said...

awesome blog! love chicago and am heading there this weekend. sadly no cubs tickets. lucky.

At 8/05/2005 5:22 PM, Blogger frightwig said...

Peter, I hope you have a good time. Let me know how it goes, and if there's anything I should check out next time.


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