Sunday, April 19, 2015

Starting with dolphins and ending with a big sperm whale!

We started today with some lovely dolphins along the south coast of São Miguel Island. We had several boats going out and we were all lucky to encounter some common dolphins and bottlenose dolphins. The group of bottlenose dolphins was one that we recognised - the group of Egípcio. Egípcio is a very distinct dolphin that has a pyramid-shaped dorsal fin. We have been seeing this individual and this group for several years and during the past few days this has been the dominant group along the south coast of the island. This morning they were very active, so we got to see some nice jumps. In the late morning our lookout spotted some low blows which were thought to be from a sperm whale. We went to the area and patiently waited and searched, but unfortunately nothing appeared. Well, we shouldn't say nothing appeared as we did get to see a nice little loggerhead turtle to put a nice end to the morning tour.

The whale encounter that we were hoping for in the morning was saved for the afternoon instead. We returned to the south east of the island and this time we were lucky as soon as arriving to the area. We were greated by a large male sperm whale which turned out to be the famous Mr Liable. He is the most encountered sperm whale here in São Miguel Island and he sure did impress us with his huge size and power! After watching him at the surface for almost 10 minutes we got to see what we were all hoping for - his mighty tail! The afternoon turned out to be the opposite to the morning as this time we saw a whale but not dolphins. It goes to show that each trip is very different, even within the same day.

Photos from today:

Bottlenose dolphins at play



A curious loggerhead turtle

The mighty Mr Liable



Mr Liable's magnificent tail

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