25.09.2017 – It runs in the family
We were able to enjoy a fantastic sighting within a very peaceful setting this morning. Our zodiac sped off with a small group of very nice guests to the waters in front of Paul do Mar, where we saw a calm group of around 30 Pilot Whales. I hadn’t seen Pilot Whales in quite a while and was as happy as my guests to see them!
These family animals gently travel in their closely-knit groups making a sighting involving them a very relaxing experience. Their calm demeanor can be somewhat deceiving; Pilot whales are nocturnal hunters and can reach speeds of up to 9m/s when pursuing their prey. During hunting hours, calves are left with other females at the surface while their mothers dive down at 2m/s in search for food, their primary target being larger squids.
The group gently approached the Stenella, allowing our guests to make memorable photos and even attempt to film the animals underwater. Another rewarding bonus was the small group of Bottlenose Dolphins swimming amongst the whales. Our spotter followed this group during the afternoon as the animals headed East so that our guests on the afternoon trip on the Ribeira Brava could enjoy observing this peaceful family.
by Paula Thake
13:30 Pilot whales
09:00 Pilot whales, Bottlenose dolphins