Today we had a whale of a trip: four species were sighted in one morning, all of them resident here in the Azores.
We started the trip going to the area where our lookouts had seen sperm whales. As very often happens in the whale watching world, when we arrived at that area, the sperm whale had gone for a mid-water dive. We could have stayed there waiting for it to come back up to breath, as the mid-water dives are short dives that last less than 15 minutes. But we were told that a group of Risso’s dolphins were swimming nearby, and how were we going to miss that?
The Risso’s dolphin is one of the four resident species around the archipelago but is not very easy to see it around Ponta Delgada. About six individuals were calmly swimming, letting us see their rounded heads and their white and grey bodies full of scratches and scars. We can say we were very lucky!
Once we observed the Risso’s dolphins well we went back to the sperm whale area. On our way, we found a group of bottlenose dolphins, jumping and socialising with each other. After staying for a while with these beautiful animals, we decided to continue our trip and search for our only resident whale species in the Azores. And wow, we found them! A huge group of sperm whales was swimming underneath the water, showing their big heads every now and then to breath some fresh air. About ten individuals, manly adult females but also male juveniles, and a calf we were able to be see thanks to the clear waters of this late spring season.
We stayed watching these big animals for quite a while and, despite our fascination towards them, it was time to say goodbye. But before going back to the harbor, we still had one more species to see: the fourth resident species! The color pattern of common dolphins amazes us every single time we see it, it is just so beautiful. Common dolphins were traveling east while socializing and porpoising. All this happened very close to land which was perfect as the wind in the open ocean was getting stronger and stronger and that’s why the afternoon trip was not taking place. Stay tuned and join as when we will be going out again!