What a Saturday! Although we left Ponta Delgada with a cloudy sky, it soon opened and became a very sunny and bright day.
We started our trip by going East, where our lookouts have sighted a group of dolphins. And there we go! We traveled quickly and soon we arrived at our first sighting – a big group of Common dolphins. What a group! Not only did they approached the boat and bow ride with us, but also showed us some of their jumps. And the best of all – calves – plenty of them besides their mothers. Common dolphins are present in the Azores all year round and are very easy to distinguish from other species due to their skin coloration – common dolphins have a yellow pattern on their sides.
After a very good time with them, it was time to leave and continue our trip. We went further south where we had two Sei whales waiting for us. Sei whales are migratory species and usually found in the waters of Azores during the spring months, although there are sometimes sighting later in the year. These are very easy to mistake with Bryde’s whales. However, while Bryde’s whales have three ridges on their head – one on the top and two on the sides, Sei whales only have one. With the pictures that our team was taking along the trip, we were able to identify the species. At Futurismo, our team of biologists takes pictures of the species we find on our trips, especially pictures of the dorsal fins and tails, and also of specific patterns/marks, for later identification – a technique that is known as photo-identification and that allows us to better understand the species that are found here in the Azores.
On our zodiac boat from the swimming with dolphins tour, we managed to see and swim with another dolphin species: the Atlantic spotted dolphin! It is a migratory species only here during summertime.
These two sightings were really exciting for everyone on board, which made us really happy knowing everyone enjoyed this amazing trip today. Come enjoy experiences like the one we had today by joining our daily trips.