M. Melis Basmaci writing for DMAD 19/12/2020

DMAD is an active and successful NGO that focuses on Marine biology and its conservation. It has another significant part in my life as it happens to be founded by my old and good friend Dr. Aylin Akkaya. Although it has been a long time that Aylin has started doing surveys in many parts of the world; it was for the first time that we had a chance to take our first survey together in Rose Heights, Radovici, Tivat yesterday morning. 
The weather was sunny and the sea was calm as a sheet with a lovely panoramic view of almost 180 degrees. We arranged the exact spot for the theodolite and gathered around our equipments in order to be ready for a possible dolphin survey at 8 o’clock in the morning. First it was a calm scenery of four fishing boats sitting duck. Later on, there was a bit more of a traffic that was caused by several speeding boats crossing over in laps in and out of our survey sight. After two hours, we had spotted the diving activity of a pod of four dolphins. They were moving towards to the Herceg Novi direction and after around 500 meters they met the rest of the pod with four more dolphins. So it was 10:56 a.m. and the pod was surface feeding as we were watching them with joy. As a course of events, suddenly, three speeding boats had entered to our sight from both directions towards to the spot where the rest of the pod was heading through or hunting. The boats had a speed of 20 knots approximately, and by the time they entered a radius of 800 meters the pod dived into the water for good and disappeared. 
We waited for another half hour observing the scenery for another sighting. As after a while had passed without an action, we accepted their disappearance and started to pack up our gear. Oh by the moment, Aylin felt dizzy from all day long sea gazing under the sun and she tripped over the theodolite and jugged its position. At that exact moment, I spotted the same pod emerged on the water in a sudden. So, there it was right in front of our eyes, a pod of four individuals, that were surface feeding. At the same time, though there was a motor boat cruising approximately 700 meters radius near them, yet they kept on feeding. There seems to be no disturbance caused by only one cruising boat with a speed of 7 knots in the perimeter around the pod. 
However, it was obvious that the speeding boats with a speed of 20 knots seem to cause a disturbance for the pod. So, It was 11:32 when we spotted the pod for the second time and here they disappeared again. After another while of waiting without any sight, we decided to end the survey for the day and packed our equipments to be headed to the beach to meet Aylin’s son Doga. Eventually, It was an exciting survey where we could read clearly the old rivalry story between the dolphins and the humans repeating again.
M. Melis Basmaci 19 December 2020 Radovici - Tivat - Montenegro