One week with whales
Text and photos:Lucy
I was very excited and looking forward to my holiday in Tarifa especially for the one week whale watching course with firmm. On our first day we could not take a boat trip because of the strong wind. So instead we had the chance to listen to a very interesting presentation from Katharina about her life in Tarifa and fascinating information on the various whales and dolphins. We were looking at pictures of the different species and learned how to distinguish them. Katharina also explained why so many marine mammals live right here.
In the evening we took part in an excursion along the rocky coast with Jörn the biologist. We found smoothed and washed out stones and glass, beautiful conch shells with little spikes and my sister Lilly and I each found a crab claw. We also saw a real living hermit crab.
On Tuesday we had a day off due to very strong wind so we went on a family day trip.
On Wednesday we finally could go out to sea. We got up very early and despite the tour not being an official Orca tour we saw Orcas! In the afternoon we were searching for a long time but eventually we found dolphins. I found the sea to be very bumpy that day.
On Thursday we had to be on the boat at 9am to go for a 3 hour Orca tour. We saw two Orca families and on the way in we also saw dolphins. On the afternoon tour we saw pilot whales and dolphins. On Friday we started at 10am. Despite it being an Orca tour this time we did not see any orcas but therefore we encountered all 3 dolphin species: the Common Dolphin, the Bottlenose Dolphin and the Striped Dolphin. Oh and 3 Sunfish casually floated by our boat. In the afternoon we found some Pilot Whales again. I would have loved to see also some Sperm Whales and Fin Whales. But nevertheless it was just amazing!
Common Dolphin: I think their pattern is really special.
Striped Dolphin: They jump much higher.
Bottlenose Dolphin: I think they are quite big for dolphins.
Pilot Whale: This is my new most favourite animal because they look as they would be smiling and they are so sweet.
Orca: It is fascinating that they are so big and also the way they hunt tuna.
Orca’s hunting methods: When a tuna has bitten and the fisherman`s pulling them up and lower them again and again has made the fish tired the Orca approaches and grabs the tuna of the hook. He only eats the lower body part of the tuna because he knows there is the metal hook in the upper part of the fish and this could be dangerous for him.