Days full of nice surprises
by firmm Team
First we saw the bottlenose dolphins. They were in a very playful mood, so we decided to follow them in a westward direction. After about 10 minutes they brought us to a group of pilot whales. We slowly passed by, but ended up leaving them alone, as and they did not seem to enjoy our company as much as the dolphins did. So we continued to follow the bottlenose dolphins when we saw a sperm whale surface to breathe. As this is a rare occurrence, we were very excited. After he dived down we continued to follow the bottlenose dolphins, and in the group I spotted what appeared to be an oversized dolphin within the group. When I told the captain that I believed that I had seen a minke whale, he replied that I was probably hallucinating. We continued to stay with the group anyway, and suddenly, for everybody to see, a minke whale surfaced. He then surfaced four more times, and the last time almost his entire body came completely out of the water. The entire head was visible, from the lighter colour of his lower jaw, to the furrows and the sharp upper jaw. That day we thanked the bottlenose dolphins for their guidance through the strait.
Photos above: The Minke Whale (Photos: Philipp Hauser)
After the highlights of the morning we were all curious with what surprises the afternoon might bring us. We went back to the strait at 3:00 pm, and after a short time we found a large group of bottlenose dolphins that were not very interested in us, and seemed to be very self-involved. A few minutes later we met a smaller group of pilot whales. The whole day we continued to spot only smaller groups of whales. It almost seemed like they were hiding, so we continued towards the Atlantic to look after some other animals. Suddenly we spotted a blow from a sperm whale in the distance. We sped up and drove towards the blow, but before we were close, the sperm whale dove back down into the water. This turned out to be okay, because immediately another animal surfaced only 100 meter away-out of the corner of my eye it appeared to be a the minke whale from the morning cruse. Upon getting closer, we were surprised that in fact, we had not seen a minke whale at all, but actually a large group of Orcas. There were about twelve animals in total, including a large male, all of which appeared to be swimming towards the Atlantic. This was a very unusual sighting, especially so late in the year, as up until this point, it was thought that the orcas were only present in July and August during tuna season, then left, but they seem to be staying longer now. Those on the boat had been participating in an observation class, or which this was the last, making for a nice treat and a terrific end.