After their first full month on board Pont-Aven and Cap Finistère, our ferries to northern Spain, the latest batch of ORCA Wildlife Officers on board have reported some extraordinary sightings.
Two fin whales (the second largest whale species on the planet) were spotted with dolphins riding in the bow wave of one of these huge whales - a first for ORCA sightings from on board our ships. Other highlights for the team were a sighting of a breaching sei whale in the Bay of Biscay and pilot whales in the English Channel.
Of the 665 sightings, cetaceans spotted include 384 common dolphins, 13 bottlenose dolphins, 15 fin whales, 5 sperm whales and 11 Cuvier's beaked whales
The team, five of whom are new to whale and dolphin spotting and are on board for the first time this year, are optimistic of a great summer season ahead.
"April has been an incredible month for recording whales and dolphins in the Western part of the English Channel and through the wildlife rich Bay of Biscay," said Sally Hamilton, ORCA director. "It's been a wonderful experience for many of our new Wildlife Officers as well as passengers on board the ferries. Their work is helping to build a huge database that we use to help in the conservation of these magnificent sea creatures."
You can find out more about our partnership with ORCA and what else we are doing to help marine conservation in our environment section.
Were you on board for any of these sightings? Share your whale and dolphin spotting experience with us in the comments below.