Today was a 6 species day!
We started with mom and baby Bryde’s whale again today! They were near Ponta Delgada but still around, against out expectations 🙂 In the afternoon we got to see a huge 300+ group of Atlantic Spotted dolphins, all around us as far as we could look. Then a ever-so-speedy pod of Striped dolphins kept us entertained for a while. We always refer to the Striped dolphins as a “National Geographic moment” since it feels like watching a TV show!
Later on the Common dolphins appeared, and we went out 17 miles in search for a Sperm whale. It was very hard to find….but something else appeared so far out of the coast! Over the VHF radio we got notified that a nearby boat was watching the very rare “Whale Shark”! The largest fish and shark on the planet. They don’t have teeth though, since they are filter feeders. The sea was quite wavy over there so we did not actually get to see the sharks body, but the tail fin was visible on the surface as the shark was racing for food, and lots of birds were diving in between him.
Finally we got to see the Sperm whale we were waiting for for such a long time! It was a large male and he also showed his fluke – interestingly – while going for a shallow dive. When we went back we accidentally found a pod of Bottlenose dolphins – in the sunset, that was giving us some final high jumps as to say “bye bye people,
During the swim-with-dolphins the Atlantic Spotted dolphins were particularly curious today and on several occasions they turned towards the swimmers to check them out. The group was very large and you could see them as far as to the horizon.