The beautiful island of Madeira is a spectacular backdrop to the various marine life encounters we share with our guests out on the Atlantic Ocean. One of our favorite encounters are those with Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis) which is also why our company named our zodiac Stenella after them. The species visits Madeiras waters in the summer months, feeding on the abundant schooling fish and deep-sea squid. Today was a typical summers day; the sun was shining from a cloudless sky and the absence of wind made the ocean completely placid, ideal conditions to fully appreciate the sightings out at sea. The spotted dolphins we met outside Jardim do Mar were being their usual interactive selves, gliding through the waves at our bow and peeking up inquisitively at our guests.
The flat ocean also allowed us to admire the Rough-toothed dolphins (Steno bredanensis) who were encountered later on with another group of Atlantic spotted dolphins outside Madalena do Mar. The animals curiously approached us, their characteristic bizarre features perfectly visible below the surface.
Kayakers were on our tail for the entire duration of the trip and were able to share these lovely. encounters with our guests. Among our guests was a group of locals from Madeira, which is always special for our crew. Apart from the fact that we love showing tourists the beautiful marine life around the island, the opportunity of sharing such moments with people from the island is just as spectacular. Madeira is truly a paradise both on land and in the water!
By Paula Thake
Sightings of the day
10:00 Atlantic spotted dolphins, Rough-toothed dolphins