First trip including highlight

by firmm Team

Text: Brigitte, Photos: firmm

The first trip of the year is always associated with a lot of expectation, excitement and anticipation. A little bit of anxiety is also part of it, because after the winter break we don't know what happened to the whales and dolphins in the Strait of Gibraltar during these long months.

On the 03rd of April 2019 finally the first tour took place; at 1 pm we left the harbour of Tarifa to search for "our" marine mammals. The last two weeks a strong east wind (Levante) was blowing, but on this day it had changed to a moderate "Poniente" (west wind), which allowed us to start the season two days earlier than originally planned.

Lola with injured dorsal fin

The first sighting of the year was a small group of Pilot Whales. Three animals appeared at some distance. Shortly afterwards a group of Bottlenose Dolphins joined them. The tension continued to rise. Would we also meet some of the animals we know? And then we saw them: Pomares, Oli, Gorro and, what we were especially happy about, the injured Lola.

Lola is back!

Just as a quick reminder: Lola is the female Pilot Whale in whose dorsal fin we discovered a small injury in May 2018, which unfortunately got worse and worse during the summer. At the end of the year we had the impression that the wound was healing. At that time Gorro did not leave her side, and in fact it has remained like this. It also seems that the injury has healed a bit more; at least it didn't get any worse. That's reassuring and pleasing.

After we had observed the animals for some time and had started our way back, a surprise which many passengers on board won't soon forget, awaited us: three Fin Whales passed by, two adult animals with one young. After they had dived, we waited, and in fact they reappeared after a few minutes and made this first trip in 2019 a very special experience.

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