Mariana, a little Portuguese girl on our morning tour said a very poetic sentence! The dolphins rode in the bow wave of the boat and she was delighted when a few splashes of sea water, displayed by the dolphins, hit them. Beaming, she said: “That’s the dolphin’s ocean kiss!” How beautiful, how poetic, how touching!
In encounters like today, when we are allowed to see how these animals slide gracefully through the blue expanse, you can feel poetical. Sometimes it seems to me that these wonderful dolphin creatures actually come from a better world and have just surfaced in our real world to remind us of the beauty, elegance and diversity of our earth.
Marine mammals are not critters; they are sentient beings. They experience sadness, compassion and joy. They are true masters of altruism and teamwork. Just a few small examples:
Do you remember Orca Lady J35, who was in the media some time ago? She mourned her dead calf for 17 days, carrying it for 1,000 miles before handing it over to the sea. At the same time we experienced such a mourning process with Pilot whales off Madeira (see blog 11.08.2018 – A declaration of love). How touching was the mourning behaviour of these beautiful animals and the support and protection of the group.
If a sick dolphin is unable to keep himself on the surface to breathe, his fellows will carry/hold him.
BeachedPilot whales must be taken out of the water to prevent mass stranding. As long as the animals are able to communicate with each other, other animals are coming dangerously close to the beach simply because their supportive behaviour is so distinct that they do not leave any of their group behind.
There have been so many reports of humpback whales protecting dolphins and seals from Orca attacks.They intervene, although it is not their own conspecifics.
If a birth is due to dolphins, the expectant mother is taken to the centre of the group to protect her from shark attacks. A midwife stands by her side.
A few years ago, lifeguards from New Zealand swimming through a bay for training reported that they were circled by dolphins and not released from their midst. As it turned out, a white shark was in the immediate vicinity. The dolphins did what they would do to their peers, they took the “weak” in the middle to protect them.
… and there are so many more examples of this kind!
It makes me speechless when people, in the name of their own almighty imagination, catch, torture, kill these animals. In such cases, I am ashamed because of this stupid ignorance and all the cruelty against these beautiful marine mammals. Today we go into September … the month in which the evil turmoil in Taiji/Japan takes its course again.
Duringsummer, the inhabitant of Faroes Islands indulges their murderous hobby of slaughtering Pilot whales … everything in the name of human tradition! Iceland is out of control this year and is killing thousands of Fin whales which are on the endangered species list … overfishing, entanglement in fishing gear, ship strikes, tuna fishing, noise pollution, plastic …. What is it wrong about us humans that we do not value, protect, what is not only ours, but also the home of many wondrous, wonderful beings? I wish people would look with their hearts, because then only mindfulness and wonder would be possible! (please remember our petitions under marine protection)
Their mourning behaviour, their altruism, their mutual protection, their team spirit, their support behaviour, their joy of being/being together triggers with me awe and admiration. We can truly learn from nature, from the sea, from whales and dolphins. Today we were enchanted by Atlantic Spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis), Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and Pilot whales (Globicephala macrorhynchus). After all, any encounter with marine mammals is always a gift to us, a kiss of the dolphins or whales.
By Fatima Kutzschbach
Sightings of the day
15:00 Atlantic Spotted dolphins
09:00 Atlantic Spotted dolphins, Pilot whales, Bottlenose dolphins
12:00 Atlantic Spotted dolphins, Pilot whales
15:30 Atlantic Spotted dolphins