Monday, November 4, 2013

Pilot whales in silvery sea

Today, in our third day with whale watching tours of November, we had an unexpected encounter with a huge pod of pilot whales. All started with the sky covered with high clouds and a calm sea in silver colour. The visibility was great, in fact during all the tour it was possible to see the silhouette of Santa Maria Island. Soon after the beginning of the tour our lookout spotted the group of pilot whales in front of the eastern end of the island. During the travelling we passed a group of common dolphins and one Risso's dolphin, and plenty of Manx shearwaters. The pod of pilots whales were spread out, but we had 15 - 20 individuals always  near our catamaran "Cetus". This group had many small calves and some big males, it was active group surfacing emerging vigorously close to us. On the way back we still had time sight a pod of common dolphins with one Atlantic spotted dolphin and to enjoy the wonderful view of Vila Franca islet. November looks promising, so far we have seen 5 species!

Photos from today:

Pilot whale (male)

Calf following its mother

Pilot whale heading towards Santa Maria

Pilot whales, mother and calf

 Santa Maria island in the background

Pilot whales (mother and calf)  - Probably the first ID-Photo of the young one

Atlantic spotted dolphin

Common dolphins

Common dolphin

Common dolphin jumping

Our crew when we got to the islet

Sally lightfoot crabs in Vila Franca Islet

Watching the islet

Vila Franca islet

Vila Franca Islet
Fishing boat

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