Today seemed to be the best day for turtle watching. On the second tour in particular, the focus was on Loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta). While Loggerhead turtles are rarely seen with their own kind, that doesn’t mean they’re without company. Also today the turtles were accompanied by several fish. One of these marine reptiles had a sea anemone perched on its head. This was probably hitchhiking through the blue galaxy. Drumond, our captain, fished a tangle of rope out of the water, which was floating very close to a turtle. Such ropes can be dangerous for these and other sea creatures as there is a risk of getting caught in them. Loggerhead turtles are among the most well-known of the sea turtles. They are found in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans. And wherever her journey takes her, a female will always return to the beach where she hatched to lay her eggs. They use the earth’s magnetic field for orientation and know how to distinguish north from south. It is believed that small magnetic particles called magnetite are responsible for this incredible feat of orientation.
In the morning we searched hard for Short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis). However, we were able to observe two animals that were looking for the vicinity of the boat. The trip went out in search of a Blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus). However, this only appeared twice briefly in the distance and was gone. Due to the coloration and the very small dorsal fin that sits very far back, we assume that it was actually a Blue whale, but we cannot say with 100% certainty. On the way back to the harbor we accompanied a small group of Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) with two calves.
In the afternoon Striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba) and Common dolphins branched out and as mentioned above many Loggerhead turtles with their fishy friends.
By Fatima Kutzschbach
Sightings of the day
09:30 Common dolphins, Bottlenose dolphins
13:30 Common dolphins
09:30 Common dolphins, Bottlenose dolphins, Loggerhead turtles, probably one Blue whale
13:30 Striped dolphins, Common dolphins, Loggerhead turtles