Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Dolphins, turtles, sharks and something on the horizon

The ocean was full of marine life today. We have a long species list to give you: bottlenose dolphin, common dolphin, loggerhead turtle, hammerhead shark, Portuguese man-o-war, valella, yellow-legged gulls, buzzards, rock pigeons, red rock crabs and a Glaucous gull. Our whale watching boat had great time with the bottlenose dolphins and our well-known Submarino and lots of baby dolphins. These dolphins gave us a show that you can never get in a dolphinarium, as usual, as we had 70-80 dolphins jumping right next to us and bowriding the calm water. Our swiming boat stayed with the bottlenose dolphins having a wonderful and magical time with them in the water and they also encountered the turtles. Later the whale watchers encountered common dolphins but (me) the biologist and the skipper saw a huge splash on the horizon that must have been a whale breaching. We went to the area but no animal appeared. If it was a sperm whale it could have gone on a dive and then it will be down for about 45 min. We also had a quick look at a hammerhead shark cutting the surface with its dorsal fin giving us that wonderful movie-feeling. And we helped clean the ocean by picking up rubbish.

Today we had an awesome swimming with dolphins day, a very large group of beautiful and playful bottlenose dolphins that offered us an amazing spectacle of jumps and were swimming with the boat for a long time, so we had the opportunity of swimming with them as the group was traveling and also hearing their songs.
Our swimming with dolphins journey became a ‘Swimming with turtles’ journey when we found two cute loggerhead turtles, so why not?  We jumped into the water as they were lying in the surface sunbathing and getting hot, as they are reptiles they need to warm up with the sun when they have the opportunity.
So they gave us the opportunity to play, film them and swim under them. The bigger one had a special friend with her, a pilot fish who didn’t separate from her.

Swimming in open sea is scary because of the feeling of being so small in the middle of the bigness but it‘s really worth it, the amazing feeling of being hand by hand with this wild and beautiful creatures.

Video of the bottlenose dolphins, enjoy!

Bottlenose dolphins


Our swimming boat

Hammerhead shark

Portuguese man-o-war 

Our skipper Veríssimo holding a Portuguese man-o-war 
and pointing out the tentacles that are venomous and you should not touch.

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