Photographer Chase Jarvis and Mike Horn were fortunate to have enjoyed a rare encounter with a super pod of dolphins recently off South Africa. And marine mammal enthusiasts are bound to appreciate how beautufully their video captures the essence of this spectacular event.
Super pods are formed when several dolphin sub groups gather as one to participate in breeding and feeding activity.
Jarvis and Horn were aboard Horn's 110-foot sailboat, Pangaea, off Cape Town. Suddenly the dolphins began to materialize in the distance.
"At first, on the horizon, we noticed what appeared to be a giant ball of bait fish," Jarvis stated on his blog. "The water boiled for literally a mile in every direction ... only as it approached at the speed of a swift wave did we see first a nose, then another, then a dorsal fin and then a thousand of them, then more.
"Only then did we realize we were experiencing the rare 'super pod' of dolphins. Not dozens, not hundreds, but thousands of them — so thick you could have walked across their backs had they been game for it."
Adds Horn in the video: "Even after sailing around the world seven times, 140,000 miles, this was the real first super pod I've seen. We were just standing there and all of us were dumbstruck and all of us, all of a sudden had this massive smile."
The two filmed this spectacle for only a few minutes, from various angles, using different types of cameras.
"After just a few minutes, we all put down our cameras, we stopped talking, and we simply took in the beauty with our eyes," Jarvis continued. "In all of my days as a photographer, there have only been a handful where I’ve been witnessing / particpating in an event like this and simply stopped shooting to take it in. This was one of those moments."