Winter in Madeira is very different to winter in central Europe. Temperatures are generally mild apart from the cold weather that comes with the occasional storm. The cold front of the past two days brought rain, wind and colder temperatures to the region but, today, our team had a window of opportunity to head out onto the beautiful Atlantic Ocean. Around one nautical mile from the shore our spotter Silvíano located a group of Short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) travelling east. These beautiful dolphins arrive here in Madeira during the winter season and our guests managed to enjoy this sighting with a backdrop of the snow-capped mountain peaks of Pico Arieiro and Pico Ruivo.
The mountain ridges were not as visible during the afternoon tour as rainclouds loomed and began to descend from the peaks towards the ocean. This didn’t stop our spotter from discovering a small group of Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) that delighted our guests with a close encounter. Shortly afterwards, our team managed yet another sighting of common dolphins before heading offshore to avoid the rain and support our spotter in his search for other cetacean species. After scanning the ocean for some time our crew decided to return to the coast and head back with a boat full of smiling guests.
By Paula Thake
Sightings of the day
09:30 Short-beaked common dolphins
13:30 Bottlenose dolphins, Short-beaked common dolphins