|Louie exploring his lagoon.|
All of the DRC dolphins live in natural seawater lagoons in Florida Bay (the Gulf of Mexico). They share their habitat with many types of fish including small mangrove snappers, pin fish, parrot fish, sergeant majors and other species. The dolphins frequently chase around the other fish and, occasionally, catch one that they then play with as sort of a live toy. Not too long ago, Louie appeared at the dock holding a sizeable redfish. (Redfish are a type of snapper.) This is the first time that we’ve seen an example of this species in the lagoon, although they’re commonly fished for up in the Everglades.
They’re also a popular fish to catch and dine on in Louisiana. Perhaps that’s why Louie spotted and captured it, being a Louisiana boy himself. The little guy was quite proud of his catch and showed it off around the lagoon. He then willingly passing it on to DRC’s Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer Mandy Rodriguez. After serving as a dolphin prize for a bit, the fish did not survive. Mandy made sure that it didn’t go to waste, however. An accomplished cook, he took it home and prepared it for a nice dinner that he shared with his wife.
|The redfish was delicious!|
Having worked with marine mammals for more than 43 years, Mandy has fed a lot of dolphins. This was the first time in his long and stellar career that Mandy was fed by a dolphin in return!