The season 2020 has ended

The summer holidays are over and Tarifa's streets have been empty since the beginning of September. We have therefore also closed down for this year.

Despite the short season we had many special sightings. We hope that the situation will become normal by the next season and can't wait to take you out to see the whales again from the 26th of March 2021 on.

See you soon in Tarifa, Katharina Heyer and the firmm team

Curious sperm whale and pilot whale baby

by firmm Team

Text: Ann-Catherine Zürcher; Fotos: firmm

In spring they have high season in the Strait of Gibraltar - the sperm whales. With a size of up to 18 meters and a weight of up to 50 tons, they are the largest toothed whales and are among the best divers. During the boat trip on the 9th of June we met a particularly curious animal. It didn't take long for him to show us his unmistakable angled blow. As we watched from afar as he refilled his body with oxygen, we were very pleased and astonished to see him approaching us. What a rare and great spectacle. The sperm whale came close to the boat and showed himself to us. About in the middle of his head, an unmistakable, large scar was clearly visible. Due to the dark colour of the scar, it appears to be an older injury. Fortunately, the injury seems to have healed well. After a few minutes the time had come and the sperm whale showed us his remarkable fluke while diving down and as so often in this moment a delighted “ohhhhh" went through the observers on the boat.

Long Sperm Whale back with scarback crest of Sperm Whalethe unmistakeable blowthe characteristic fluke

However, the encounter with the curious sperm whale was not the only memorable experience during this trip. We were privileged to meet a pilot whale baby, who was at most one to two days old and had not yet developed the characteristic, round swimming style of pilot whales. New-born pilot whales are still a little bit clumsy when they need to draw breath. After stretching their heads out of the water, they do not dive in again round and elegantly as adult animals do, but land clumsily with a splat on the water surface. But it will only take a few days until the newly born learns to move and swim as smoothly and gracefully as the adult animals.

Go back