Saturday, October 10, 2015

Autumn whale watching

It's come to the time of the year that we really feel that Autumn is in the air, and it's a great time to be whale watching off São Miguel Island in the Azores. In the morning we encountered fin whales to the east of the island. These migratory whales are seen very frequently in the Azores in the spring, during their north-bound migration, but are not seen as often during their south-bound migration in the Autumn. It was a lovely surprise to be able to encounter these gentle giants, the second largest animal in the world. During the morning tour we also encountered a small group of playful common dolphins that included lots of small juveniles. Later we also encountered some Risso's dolphins, a much more shy species that is equally beautiful to see. In the afternoon we went far far away to try to see fin whales, but we ended up with a shy sei whale. Unfortunately no photos of this sei whale as it was a very brief encounter. We also encountered more Risso's dolphins just outside of Ponta Delgada and Atlantic spotted dolphins on the way tot he whales.

Photos from the morning:

Fin whale surfacing in the beautiful Autumn light


Risso's dolphins

Loggerhead turtle

Common dolphin wave surfing

Photos from the afternoon:

Risso's dolphin

Risso's dolphins

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