On tours with several species of dolphin it instantly becomes apparent that each species displays a different behaviour towards our boats. Some species tend to be more evasive, like the Striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba), others circle our boat like phantoms, curiously peeking up as they glide by us like the Rough-toothed dolphins (Steno bredanensis). Then there are the dolphins that instantly leap towards us as we enter a sightings area, like the Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis). Despite this expected species-specific behaviours, each and every single dolphins has a different personality and experiences different learning processes.
People on our tours also display a spectrum of different reactions to encounters with dolphins. Some people squeal in delight, others smile silently and others wave their cameras to and fro to get the perfect shot of their experience. Today we had a wonderful group of guests on board the Stenella who were all very interested in the social lives and different behaviours of these charismatic creatures. One little girl in particular was delighted about each and every single dolphin, from the shy Striped dolphins up to the leaping spotted dolphins. Such reactions are an absolute joy to witness and make my job as a guide so much more rewarding.
The group on board the Ribeira Brava was equally delightful and full of young dolphin lovers ready to find out more about their favourite marine creatures. I gave as much information as I could about the life cycle and biology of the Rough-toothed dolphins and Atlantic spotted dolphins we met out on the ocean. This will hopefully motivate our guests even more to help protect our oceans and the precious lives of every single dolphin.
By Paula Thake
Sightings of the day
15:00 Atlantic spotted dolphins, Rough-toothed dolphins
10:00 Atlantic spotted dolphins, Rough-toothed dolphins, Striped dolphins