• Atlantic Naturalist

|1-5-2019 pm| Sperm Whales North and Blue Whales South of Faial!

Updated: Sep 30, 2019

The afternoon started by heading straight North to find a group of Sperm Whales (Physeter macrocephalus). There is always time for a stop for a pod of the resident Risso's Dolphins (Grampus griseus) that crossed our path. They were resting: this species hunts at night and rest during daytime.


Risso's Dolphins slowly swimming while resting

After this fleeting encounter we continued to the area where the lookouts were spotting Sperm whale's blows. First, we found a female and a juvenile, then a second pair that turned out into a quartet. At the end, all 6 animals were together socializing (four adults and two juveniles). Finally, they dived fluking with Capelinhos volcano as a background allowing us to collect some good fluke photos for the catalogue.

Sperm Whale's fluke

Sperm Whales and Capelinhos vulcano

Female Sperm whales can spend up to 45 minutes under the water, so we left the area towards a pod of Common dolphins (Delphinus delphis).


Common Dolphin

The group seemed to have high surface activity but after few minutes it showed avoidance behavior, likely due to the great amount of juveniles and calves. Still, one kept jumping repeatedly as in photo above. We left the pod and started our way back to Horta. But more news were coming...


Two Blue whales (Balaenoptera musculus) were close to the shore of Monte da Guia, in the South of Faial Island. The sights of Blue whales are increasing as the season advances. We decided to lengthen the trip and reach the largest species of animal ever known.


Blue Whale and South-Faial shoreline

The two animals were surprisingly near to the coastline and transiting.

Blue Whale few meters away from the shoreline of the South of Faial

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