01.02.2021 – Hills of water
The first day of the second month of this new year brought a large swell to the waters around the island. Our spotter sent our traditional boat over the mounds of water further West where we watched the waves crash ferociously onto the shores of Jardim do Mar and Paul do Mar. As fierce as a rough ocean can be, there is an elegance in it, particularly because we could watch the strong waves hit the coast while we safely cruised over the mounds of water further out at sea.
We soon crossed paths with a small pod of Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) that were hastily moving eastward, paying little attention to our boat and its excited passengers. We tried approaching one subgroup and then another, but as the animals engaged in a sudden change in direction we decided it was time to move on. Despite their lack of interest in our boat, we all still got to fully admire the strength and charisma of these incredible ocean dwellers, two qualities that have been appreciated by mankind since time immemorial.
Our timeless fascination with dolphins is extremely well represented in Bottlenose dolphins, since they occur almost everywhere, enjoy coastal waters and are extremely adaptable, which unfortunately led us to believe that they fare well in captivity. Their friendliness and curiosity towards humans only strengthened this false sense of empathy but this mindset is gradually changing for the better.
While Bottlenose dolphins are hands down the most famous of all dolphins, the Short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis), the second species we encountered on todays tour, are unquestionably one of the most beautiful. These gorgeous animals curiously approached the bow of our boat to cruise alongside us for a while, allowing us to admire them in their full glory. Common dolphins also happen to be one of the first described species of dolphin, with stories and artwork involving them dating as far back as ancient Greece and Rome.
After our lovely sighting with the common dolphins, we began to head back over the hills of water back to the marina with a boat full of satisfied and smiling guests.
By Paula Thake
Sightings of the day
14:30 Bottlenose dolphins, Short-beaked common dolphins