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The Catalina Islander
Avalon, California
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November 2, 2012     The Catalina Islander
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November 2, 2012
 

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Halloween Parade photos by JelTnifer Leonhardi By Theresa Cummings On a recent two-hour tour called the "Wild Dolphin Coastal Excursion" provided by Ocean Rafting, there appeared a large sea creature, the size of a small whale. As the power inflatable boat drew near, the pod was identified as Ris- so dolphins. The Risso dolphin was named after Mr. Risso. In 1812, he was the first person to describe the specimen. Their bodies are heav- ily scarred with scratches from teeth raking between dolphins, and makings from their prey which is predominantly squid. Squid are plentiful in the San Pedro Chan- nel, running between mainland California and the Channel Is- lands. This makes the channel a prime habitation for the Risso, which feeds' on the squid primarily noc- Such sightings are common- turnally, place, but landing within the midst Although this tour was in of a small pod is a rare and awe- search of the playful bottlenose inspiring event. dolphins and short-beaked com- The species range from 8.5-13 mon dolphins, the first sighting feet in length and weigh between along the coastheading north was 600-1100 pounds. These were of a harbor seal seated on a rock. certainly in the higher range in It was a remarkable spectacle, both feet and weight. However, the following dis-The R~sso dolphin are found covery and observation at close worldwide in temperate and tropi- range of the Ris~so's-was astound~ o ~ waters, usually in deep waters ing. They moved ffr6und the ves- father than close to land. sel undaunted and alighted in and Their preferred habitat is just out of the water undeterred by our off the continental shelf on steep presence, banks with-water depths varying from 1,300-3,300 feet, and with water temperature preferably be- tween 59 F 68 E This makes our channel a perfect location for these amazing creatures to make their home. Locals who are familiar with the different species of dolphin that are common in our local wa- ters can often identify the Risso, despite its similarities to .other common dolphin. Oftentimes the Risso can be viewed from heights well above sea level and can be mistaken as a whale due to their large size. SINGING WATERScENTER REACHING THE ISLAND 346 CATALINA AVE I ~: ~ --' I "1- - " Meet Cookie_ Cookie is a 2 1/2 year old German Shephard owned by Margie Wahl. Margie and Adam drove to Rubidoux, CA to meet with a breeder and picked Cookie out of the group of puppies when she was just 5 weeks old. She came home to the Island on Easter Sunday in 2010, and has been Margie's best friend every day since. Some of Cookie's favorite thihgs to do in- clude swimming in the ocean, cruising around in the golf cart, and playing with kids. MAKE YOUR PET AN ISLANDER STAR: Please send us your favorite photo of yours or favorite local pet and information about the pet to be included in the Catalina Islander: Email your high resolution photo to editor@thecatalinaislander.com. DESCANSO lEnj und y Bm h B b lnb in one tmr . " *C~nrrplime nr.a~- ttse ~ f?~r~- du t~ brum-h. BlueSea Care Services "Our Care Is Unique as you Are/" dignity & with one of our .. . Mature & Loving Professionals BlueSea Located tn Seal Beach Cctr~ Sers~t~ces ~ 949-554-5411 Established 1993 www.blueseacare.com 6 ~ Friday, November 2, 2012 TilE CATALINA ISLANDER