Sunday, August 18, 2013

A social group of sperm whales

Today we have a group of sperm whales near São Miguel island. In the morning we encountered several individuals from the group. The passengers aboard our smaller boats were lucky to see a sperm whale breaching several times near their boats. Those on our catamaran were just arriving as the show was ending, but we managed to see some jumps from a distance. The group was socialising so we were able to see them at the surface for some time and some of the individuals became curious towards our catamaran. During the morning we also encountered common dolphins to complete the tour. Their were many babies in the group and the majority of the common dolphins were feeding together with Cory's shearwaters that were always flying above the group. And our swimming boat swam with both common dolphins and Atlantic spotted dolphins in the morning and the afternoon.

In the afternoon we had brilliant encounters with two resident dolphin species: common and bottlenose dolphins. Leaving the harbour we were greeted by a pod of over 600 common dolphins including many calves. We then turned our attention to the sperm whales we sighted earlier this morning but unfortunately we were unable to locate them due to poor visibility. We finished the day with a large group of bottlenose dolphins, approximately 50 individuals, that showed off their acrobatic abilities. 

Photos from the morning:

Sperm whales - 2 adults with a calf between them

Sperm whale calf surfacing next to an adult

Two sperm whales starting a deep dive

Common tern on a floating chest that we later picked up

Another sperm whale

Common dolphin

Photos from the afternoon:

Beautifully coloured common dolphins

Juvenile common dolphin having fun

Common dolphins everywhere!

Watching common dolphins from the top deck of our catamaran

Bottlenose dolphins

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