Thursday, May 30, 2013

Fin whales bowriding, common dolphins and Mr Liable

Today was one more amazing day in the islands of mist. We had 2 tours, one in morning and another the afternoon (with our medium-sized boat and  zodiac respectively). The morning tour started with a sighting of a small group of shy common dolphins. We did not stay long with them as we had whales to see a bit further offshore. As we arrived to the area we could already see the blows of a couple of whales and we soon identified them to be fin whales. After a few minutes we were surprised to realise there were in fact 4 fin whales. They were doing short dives and always surprising us by surfacing in front of our slow moving boat. They seemed to be curious, more like dolphins than whales. A few times we could see them rolling over in the water, perhaps to see us better. Every time we thought they were diving and leaving us they would surprise us again by surfacing right in front of our boat. After some time we left the dolphins and headed inshore again to see the common dolphins better before returning to base. This time the group was larger, with more than 100 individuals. The final surprise of the tour was a few quick glimpses of a striped dolphin that was mixed in with the common dolphins. In the afternoon our whale watchers encountered two groups of common dolphins, our well known male sperm whale called "Mr Liable" (names so because he is reliable because he always returns to this area, he stays up a long time and then almost always shows his beautiful tail). On this tour we also came across a large loggerhead turtle.

Videos from this morning:

Photos from the morning:

Fin whale in the beautiful morning light

4 fin whales surfacing together!

The tip of a fin whale tail. This whale was swimming on its side near us

Common dolphin in a beautiful blue sea with a blue sky - our last encounter for the tour

Photos from the afternoon:

The sperm whale "Mr. Liable" at the surface

Mr. Liable's fluke

Common dolphins

Loggerhead turtle next to our boat

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