Start of the new season on the 8th of April 2022

The 2021 season is now over. We look forward to welcoming you back on the 8th of April 2022.

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

What a boat trip!

by firmm Team

After 15 minutes already, we discovered a blow. That`s no Sperm whale, but too small for a Fin whale... Strange! Yes, it must be a Fin whale, but a little one. It is hardly moving. Could it be a Minke whale? This species we see only once in a blue moon.

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The young Fin whale (picture: firmm®)

We were observing the animal for quite a while with suspense, when suddenly a big Fin whale emerged directly besides the little one, supposedly the calve's mother.


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They were surrounded by little Striped Dolphins, which came curiously to our boat again and again. What extremes! The little Striped (or blue-white) Dolphins, with a size of only 2 meters and the Fin whale mother, with a size of about 22 meters with a calve of 12 meters. (picture below: Carine Zimmermann)

100 4940 Finnwal mit Delfinen Carine

After this exciting beginning we continued our boat trip southbound towards the Moroccan side of the Strait of Gibraltar, where we soon encountered a family of Pilot whales. As if we had called them, some curious Bottlenose dolphins joined us just a moment later. Nevertheless I let ramble my gaze, because I got the feeling that on this side of the Strait also Sperm whales could appear. And sure enough, after another half hour I espied the first blow of a Sperm whale and on our way there I saw another big blow in the distance, where we could observe a little bit later the diving tail fin (picture below: Carine Zimmermann). The excitement on the boat was immense and the people did not know where to look first!

100 4966 Pottwal Carine


Unfortunately a big cargo was navigating directly towards the Sperm whale, which did not seem to descend. I wanted to shout "dive!", but of course the whale did not react. Right on time it let itself sink when a moment later the big cargo passed it closely. A short time later it appeared again, thank God without any injuries! These are always anxious moments and I remember the promises of the Spanish ministry in February, that big cargos have to be advised to be attentive in times, when there are many Sperm whales in the Strait. Unfortunately we never have heard such a radiogram up to now. Regrettably it will probably take some more years until this will be implemented. All the more important it is, that we continue to plead for the animals in the Strait. This Sperm whale descended comfortably after having prepared itself enough for the next dive. It is always a unique adventure to see how it moves the body for descending in a majestic way.

Suddenly a third Sperm whale emerged very closely just a moment later to round off the eventful boat trip. The guests, especially the many children, could not stop marvelling!

2 different types of dolphins, the Pilot whales, a mother Fin whale together with a calve and 3 Sperm whales! Even for us, being on the boat many times, don't experience such sightings every day!


-KH-

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