Update from our volunteer vacation / conservation holiday protecting whales, dolphins and turtles around the Azores archipelago (www.biosphere-expeditions.org/azores)

There were no signs of the Monday morning blues as we set out to sea after two days ashore. Rightly so, as the sun was shining, the sea was calm and snow dusted the top of Pico.

Aside from our normal encounters with common dolphins and loggerhead turtles, the first main event to document was with a mighty fin whale, second only in size to the blue whale. It is not often you can spend your Monday morning tracking fin whales.

However, the day was to get better. Reports were coming in of a pod of false killer whales. So we powered along the south coast of Pico island and sure enough came across a large pod (100+) of the false killer whales – sleek, black, torpedo-shaped and a member of the dolphin family.

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This species is often found in association with bottlenose dolphins, and we weren’t disappointed. A flurry of data collection and photography ensued, as the teamed work to document the encounter (and individuals) but also enjoy the show, as both species moved in to the ride the bow waves of our boat.

As we finally parted ways, and went back on one of our survey transects, the day was neatly rounded off with yet more fin whales and a passing encounter with a small group of Risso’s dolphins.

Monday was definitely a dolphin day.


 

Update from our volunteer vacation / conservation holiday protecting whales, dolphins and turtles around the Azores archipelago

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