17 September 2022

17 Sep 2022

Whale Safari Guides

Whale Safari Guides

Species seen today: humpback whale, minke whale, harbour porpoise, white-beaked dolphin

Today was one of those rare days in Reykjavik, when we've had sunny weather, no wind and almost flat, beautifully calm sea.

Our morning tour started with a sighting of 1 harbour porpoise. It was not particulary interested in us, but we could see it clearly in perfectly flat sea. We headed out to the area where we heard minke whales has been seen and it was the same area where we saw a humpback whale yesterday. During a longer wait, we headed to the white-beaked dolphins we saw in the distance. When we approached them, we noticed they were in a sleepy-chillin' mode, and not in the mood to be watched, so, after they turned around to the other direction, we tryed to see them one more time and then let them go their way. We went back to the humpback whale area, which was still under the surface, and when we arrived, the individual surfaced and fluked up next to us! We saw its 3 diving sequences, of which on 2 it raiseed its flukes (tail) high up in the air. We recognised the individual - it was Mariupol, a male that we were seeing very often this summer, usually very atractive to watch, with unique playful beahaviour very often. It was diving 6 mins dives and not moving much, very slowly, like it's resting/chillin'. We also spotted a minke whale in the distance so after this nice encounter, we headed toward the minke. We saw minke surfacing few times. It was taking 2 breaths at the surface, but had short dives. In the same time we got surrounded by a pod of at least 12 harbour porpoises scattered around us (looking for fish probably). We turned off our engines and enjoyed listening stronger breaths of minke and cute ones from porpoises all around us. Two propoises we saw restign at the sruface, logging, and one even spy hopped, which was incredibly cute! On the way back we passed by a pod of around 6 porpoises, swimming very close to each other, syncronised, seemed they had calves in the group. 

On our afternoon tour, our first encounter was with a pod of 4-6 elusive harbour porpoises. After that, we were watching Mariupol, a humpback whale from the morning tour. It was behaving in the same way. After a good look at him, we continued our search further out direction northwest. We spotted a group of 8-10 white-beaked dolphins. It was a "kindergarten" group, composed of females, lot of juvenils and few calves. They were avoiding us, so we left them in peace. On the way back, we stopped in the area where we spotted 2 minke whales feeding. Whales lunge feed few times, making big splashes at the surface. There were also different bird species (northern gannets, common guillemots, Manx sheerwaters, Soothy sheerwaters, Black-legged kittiwakes, northern fulmars) above them and around us, and at least 12 harbour porpoises scattered around, feeding as well.

What a joy to be at the sea!


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