Spectacular Start into the Orca Season!
by Katharina Heyer
Orcas larboard – Fin Whales starboard! An unforgettable experience.
Text: Katharina, Photos: firmm
Unique moments with Orcas and Fin Whales on the same trip!
12. July 2010: First attempt in finding orcas and immediately successful!
At 09.00 o’clock we left under perfect conditions into the direction of the Atlantic, where the fishermen had reported the first Orca sightings three days before Levante. Due to very strong winds, we were only able to go out again now.
The firmm Spirit was merely 45 minutes enroute, when we spotted 3 Fin Whales, which were heading in the same direction as us, into the Atlantic. In addition, to the delight of the many children on board, appeared 12 bottle-nose dolphins around the Fin Whales! What a surprise! Over an hour we accompanied the three giants!
Meanwhile we had left the Spanish fishermen far behind us and were located far out in the Atlantic. And there they were! As if it was self-evident, the first Orcas started to swim towards us.
All in all we saw 14 Orcas close up and a little further away where a further four to five animals visible. It seems as though the whole group has returned to the Strait of Gibraltar to go hunting for the Red Tuna.
We are especially happy that the old matriarch seems to be in best of health and that the known male Camacho, with his mighty dorsal fin, healthfully survived the winter as well.
Orcas larboard – fin whales starboard: That we encountered both species at the same time has never happened during the whole 12 year history of the foundation firmm.
15. July 2010
Since then we have seen Orcas on a daily basis, apparently they have settled down in the Strait of Gibraltar!