Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Weather unstable but impressive

The weather in the azores is unstable, amazing and today was a great proof of that. Our morning wasn't easy because of the rain and the fog that didn't allow our lookouts do their job. They spotted a group of common dolphins that were lost in the middle of the rain. Unfortunately we could not find them because of the waves. In the afternoon we seemed to be on a totally different island.The sea was much calmer and with a few common dolphins close to the marina of ponta delgada. We went a little further to look for a group of bottlenose dolphins but they went for a deep dive in wich made it impossible for us to see them. But another group of common dolphins was making the joy of our guests full of energy and with many rainbows to look good in the photo.

Yellow -legged Gull | Larus michahellis

 Rainbow :)

Cory's shearwater (Calonectris borealis)

Monday, November 28, 2016

Unpredictible weather... in the middle of the Atlantic

Who went out to sea with us today realized in a few hours how the weather in the middle of the Atlantic is: some wind, rain, sun... and rainbows everywhere! But, being limited by the conditions, we were able to spot a group of common dolphins and a group of bottlenose dolphins. Both species were close to the shore and close to each other, but with a remarkably different attitude. We found first the common dolphins, scattered, without a particular direction and constantly diving, indicating that the animals were looking for food. The bottlenose dolphins were a group well known by us, the Bubblemaker´s group! They were much quieter and curious than common dolphins, allowing us to approach them and offering a fantastic encounter as they always do.

Some photos of our trip:

 Common dolphins surfacing

 We can see the beautifull colors of this specie

 Bottlenose dolphins were the group of Bubblemaker

 Some more detailed images of bottlenose

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Morning with tricky weather

The morning turned out to be with a calm sea and with good climacteric conditions, such as our lookouts were able to spot a good group of Baleen Whales, further West to our base.
However, the climate of the Azores can be quite tricky and heavy rain with big clouds took shape and blocked the visibility of our lookouts.
Nevertheless our team was able to provide us with two species of dolphins. The common ones, with their beautiful yellow, black and white bodies and the Bottlenose, with their imposing size.
Against this adversity, it was with great sorrow that we changed our route to the East where the sky was still clear.
Finalizing, after an accurate photo analyses by our biologist team, we realized that in the bottlenose dolphins group, there was Max – a dolphin with a malformation in its upper jaw.
Luckily all collide in mix of sensations. For one side, we had to abdicate the whales due the bad weather, on the other hand we had the pleasure to navigate in a calm sea in the company of two animal species.

Yellow -legged Gull | Larus michahellis
Little Egret | Egretta garzetta

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Fin whales!

Today fin whales were still around our island, even thought they were feeding and spending a very little time on the surface. In the morning tour was more difficult to spot it; in the afternoon we manage to see it better. We also saw common dolphins also feeding and jumping in the morning tour.

Photos from today:

 After a long time waiting for it, the fin whale finally surfaced very close to our zodiac

 Common dolphins were all togheter and looking for food

 A tecnique that this dolphins use to hunt is jumping over the fish

Friday, November 25, 2016

Summer sun, autumn sea and winter cold

Today we had a beautiful morning. The common dolphins were very curious and were always been in front of our vessel. Our lookout said that it was time to leave them because he had a surprise for us. Fin Whales are back!! They were always at a distance but never to far from our boat. Now we are waiting for news of our trip in the afternoon.

 Swimming boat

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Baleen whales again in São Miguel!!

After some days with no whales, we finally had an amazing day in company of fin whales! We start our trip with our very dear common dolphins, a very nice group in company of Cory’s shearwaters and a Risso’s dolphin in the middle when our lookout spotted Fin whales. They were very calm and curious about our boats, so we saw them very very close! In the afternoon they were still there at least 3 of them. A very nice group of bottlenose dolphin also showed up to make our day perfect! This is the magic of Açores, we never know what to expect about each trip

Head and blowhole of one of the whales

                                                         Whales were togheter all the time

                                                                Detailed blowhole

                                                     Group of bottlenose dolphins

Common dolphins

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

A different day

Not every day is easy to work with nature and wild animals. Today the sea was a bit rough , and the dolphins were not very curious in our presence. This morning we were able to see common dolphins with lots of cory's shearwater and during the afternoon a bottlenose dolphin was playing in the waves of our vessel 4 Ventos. In the afternoon trip we could also see a loggerhead turtle and, as we were close to Vila Franca do Campo, we also hadt a look at the islet.

 Cory's shearwater (Calonectris borealis)

 Loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta)

Islet of Vila Franca do Campo

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Striped dolphin show

This morning was all about the dolphins. First we encountered our resident common dolphins who were very keen to bowride, as they often are. It was really nice to see them surfing the waves right in front of our boats, a sight we can never get enough of. Further offshore we encountered a different species: striped dolphins. The typical behaviour of these dolphins is very different; they are very active, travelling at speed and leaping out of the waves in unison. Today we got to see the best of this type of behaviour, especially since the sea was choppy, giving the dolphins plenty of waves to leap out of. It was a striped dolphin show, as you can see in the few photos below that we managed to capture this morning:

Friday, November 18, 2016

Dolphins and rainbows

Today we went out on the ocean in the morning to encounter a beautiful group of common dolphins. At first they were feeding and we could see them very quickly chasing fish and leaping out of the water to go after them. After a while the dolphins calmed down and swam over to our boat to check us out. The ocean was really calm and clear, just like a summer day. This made for perfect views as the dolphins gracefully glided around in front of our boat. Several times we could see that they were watching us as much as we were watching them, as they turned on their sides to make eye contact. After our dolphin encounter our coastal lookout guided us to an area of some beaked whales. We got to have a very blief glimpse of them once but they never reappeared. Nevertheless, the common dolphins as well as the numerous rainbows throughout the morning made for a perfect tour!

Photos from today:

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