Monday, April 14, 2014

Cetaceans everywhere close to Ponta Delgada

Today was one of those days in which we had lots of animals around us. We started with two majestic fin whales during our morning tour. Today whale watching didn't take a lot of waiting, very soon after we arrived to the area of the whales they began surfacing close to our boat. An adult and a juvenile. After the whales we went to see common dolphins, but the group that we found had newborn babies and they were a bit shy towards the boats. The babies curiously looked at our boat and we got a quick look at them, and then we decided to leave them alone with their calves. next the ocean gave a little surprise; a small loggerhead turtle. It was on the surface together with a large bit of plastic, that we picked up. We didn't have to go far to find another group of dolphins, but this time it was bottlenose dolphins. They also had babies but were not shy at all, bowriding, jumping and playing around. We also saw them working for the future and some males displaying their strength and agility. After this show we started heading back toward Ponta Delgada, but only two minutes away from the marina we encountered another group of common dolphins, a group of curious adults. 

In the afternoon our first encounter started just 3 minutes into the tour. Just around the corner from our bast in Ponta Delgada marina we encountered a group of bottlenose dolphins. They were very playful and we had the pleasure of seeing a tiny newborn calf. Just a bit further out, but still very close to base, we encountered 3 fin whales. They were different individuals to those from the morning, but they were just as calm and amazing to watch. Within this area we also encountered a loggerhead turtle (again different from the morning) and a beautiful mauve stinger (jellyfish) floating on the surface. After the whales we enjoyed some time with a group of common dolphins near the airport. Through the day the weather was great and it was nice to share another great day on the ocean with the springtime baleen whales.

Photos from the morning:

Fin whale

Fin whale

Fin whale

Turtle and plastic

Our skipper picking up the plastic and further away you can see the turtle

Bottlenose dolphin bowriding

Mother and calf

Calf playing around our boat

Photos from the afternoon:

Bottlenose dolphin just outside of Ponta Delgada marina

Fin whale not far from Ponta Delgada

Fin whale close to Ponta Delgada

 Our boat Alfredo Baleeiro waiting for the fin whales

Two fin whales surfacing

Two fin whales before diving

Loggerhead turtle

Preparing to swim with common dolphins

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