Thursday, July 10, 2014

Full day tour - whale watching and a visit to Vila Franca Islet

During the summer months Futurismo offers a full day tour which comprises a morning of whale watching, a lunch of local and freshly caught fish and an afternoon spent snorkeling inside the crater lagoon of Vila Franca Islet. The extinct volcanic crater "Vila Franca Islet" is a protected area so fishing is not allowed here and the area is protected for the seabirds (such as the Cory's shearwater and common tern) that nest here. Today we enjoyed the morning with 3 dolphin species (common dolphins, bottlenose dolphins and Atlantic spotted dolphins) followed by sperm whales. We saw an adult who dived and from its tail we can identify it as number 81 in our catalogue, a large female sperm whale who we have seen here in São Miguel once before, on June 18th 2010. We also came across a younger calf on our way in to Vila Franca do Campo where we enjoyed a lunch with a view over the marina. The water in the islet was very clear today so we had a great view of the great diversity of fish underwater. 

Common dolphin

Common dolphins bowriding one of our boats

Bottlenose dolphin

Atlantic spotted dolphin leaping out of the waves

Sperm whale "logging" at the surface

Sperm whale fluking

Sperm whale ID photo (individual number 81 in our catalogue)

Thicklip grey mullet (Chelon labrosus) in the islet lagoon

Goldline (Sarpa salpa) feeding along the bottom of the lagoon

Ornate wrasse (Thalassoma pavo)

Male rainbow wrasse (Coris julis)

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