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article imageVideo: Pacific white-sided dolphins virtually kissing the camera

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By Elizabeth Batt     Aug 13, 2012 in Environment
Santa Cruz - While fishing for albacore tuna 20 miles off the coast of Santa Cruz, California, an underwater camera catches some incredible footage of a pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins, up close and personal.
What the underwater GroPro camera revealed, is some of the best footage of dolphins in the wild ever captured. The video, posted on Vimeo by Mark Peters and called 'The Blue,' begins with a group of men tuna fishing aboard the vessel, A Salt Weapon.
Sensitive souls may wish to skip the tuna gaffing and go straight to 1:52, where for the next few minutes you'll get as close to a Pacific white-sided dolphin in the wild, as you're ever likely to get. The pod of dolphins tail the camera so closely, you can acknowledge the intelligence in their eyes. Streamlined bodies are so clear and distinct, you can almost reach out and touch them.
The film of the dolphins was captured on August 03, with a GoPro Hero2. Fitted with a dive housing, Peters said, he then "Made a "torpedo" housing to hold the GoPro steady underwater. You can see the torpedo in the video," he adds, explaining that "the dive housing with the flat lens on the GoPro is the key to getting sharp picture underwater."
Pacific white-sided dolphins.
Pacific white-sided dolphins.
NOAA, NMFS, SWFSC, PRD
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Since Peters posted the video, which has now gone viral, he says he has received "An awful lot of requests on the "torpedo" housing." These only increased when GoPro, the makers of the camera, made it the 'Video of the Day' on their Facebook page.
Despite all the inquiries, Peters wasn't sure what he wanted to do about marketing his torpedo housing, but he's currently leaning towards a funding platform for creative projects at Kickstarter.com.
What isn't in doubt, is that the footage captured, (in MPEG-4 and edited with iMovie), is sufficiently compelling enough to warrant a spot on the Discovery Channel.
Pacific white-sided dolphins are known to be "extremely playful and highly social animals," said NOAA Fisheries, and often mix with other species of dolphin. These acrobatic marine mammals often enjoy bow riding and feeding on "squid and small schooling fish such as capelin, sardines, and herring."
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