During the afternoon and evening tours, spotter Carlos guided us to a place where 6-8 whales were feeding. For sure it were Bryde’s whales (other name is Tropical whale). Eventually even Sei whales were amongst them. We already reported several times, that in the wild it is difficult to identify those two species apart.
During their feeding frenzy, the whales moved fast and show even their prosoma (upper part of the body) out of the water. This baleen whale species belongs to the familly of rorquals because its ventral pleats (32-60) at their throats. Those pleats are stretchable and allow the whale taking up a big gulp of water, in which included is the prey (schooling fish, squid, crustaceans). This procedure is called lunge feeding.
Also a school of Common dolphins was feeding. Small and agile, they moved around their taller cousinhood. Dolphins catch their prey piece by piece and with their teeth. Prey is swallowed unchewed.
On our evening tour – we went back to the same place – we stopped over and observed three Blainvilles beaked whales, travelling in a eastern direction. The common dolphins which we found after, again with baleen whales, seemed to be full and calmer. Instead of hunting, they were interested to approach our boat, showing us their flukes (headstand) and heads in the air and even shaking them. All this in front of the beginning sunset.
A wonderful finish of a great day at sea.
by Astrid Haas
Sightings of the day:
09.00: Common dolphins (snorkeling trip)
15.30: Common dolphins, Tropical whales (and Sei whales?)
18.00: Blainvilles beaked whales, Tropical whales and Common dolphins
13.30: Common dolphins