A Successful Prelude to the 12th Season

by firmm Team

Text: Pia Ackermann and Katharina Heyer
Photos: firmm

Even though the financial crisis has affected economic activities worldwide, the future looks promising for the firmm team. It even seems that we could be benefiting from the side effects of the recession. The tourism industry anticipates an increased popularity of holiday destinations in Europe. It is expected that the trade and therefore the freight traffic in the Strait of Gibraltar will continue to decrease which will have a positive impact on "our" dolphins and whales. With the larger and stronger boat "firmm Spirit", more visitors are able to enjoy the animals in their natural environment at the same time. So we are best prepared for season 2009.

On April 1st we re-opened our office in Tarifa. Annual activities like dusting, airing-out and dehumidifying the office as well as preparing all the materials took up most of the time during the first days. On a mild and sunny 3rd of April our boot started out for the first tour of the season. Would we meet "our" friends again?

Yes, here they were: just right on the first trip Curro, the pilot whale who had a deep injury in his back, and Zackzack, showed-up. Curro's injury seems to have healed well.

zackzack vergroessert 04Zackzack with Baby


While enjoying the reunion with our good old friends, Lolly, a massive Bottlenose Dolphin, appeared with her baby near the boot. She was full of beans and amused the passengers with a little show. Fortunately the fungus on her dorsal fin did not spread to other parts of her body.


And it was getting better and better: On the morning trip on the 8th of April we met a Sperm whale.

041209 149 Ausschnitt1

041209 151 Ausschnitt1

041209 152 flosse vergroessert

On the second trip of the day we sighted two Fin whales which were on their way back to the Atlantic Ocean! We could hardly believe our eyes. Our captain Diego calculated where they were heading. Fin whales are fast swimmers. It is not easy to keep up with them at an adequate distance. But Diego managed to keep up and therefore presented the passengers and crew unforgettable impressions by showing them the massive but also very elegant animals. In addition to this already unbelievable experience, a group of Bottlenose Dolphins put on an amusing show on the way back to the harbour: spy-hopping, splashing, rolling - a complete program. Pure inspiring joy of life. The guests were enthusiastic. This was not only a successful prelude to the Semana Santa, but also to a promising 12th firmm-year.




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