Wildlife Highlights: Minke Whale, Guitarfish and Hundreds of Dolphins

July and August brought hundreds of spinner dolphins, a minke whale, ornate eagle ray, tiger sharks and, of course, numerous of humpback whale sightings. 

One of the most interesting encounters was a black marlin – an incredibly difficult animal to film owing to their speed, elusiveness and open ocean habitats. The team was lucky to be able to take a video of the marlin at the end of their dive.

A minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) was seen on a safety dive stop at a depth of 5 metres around one of the pinnacles emerging from a deep channel – site Area 51. This rare sighting of this elusive whale serves as a testament to the rich cetacean biodiversity that thrives in this area.  

July 4th: Scalloped hammerhead shark (Sphyrna lewini), green turtle (Chelonia mydas), 19 humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae), 4 bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.).

July 14th: Minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata)

July 12th: Ornate eagle ray (Aetomylaeus vespertilio).

July 17th: Loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta), 2 green turtles (C. mydas).

July 18th: Green turtle (C. mydas), 3 humpback whales (M. novaeangliae), 2 grey reef sharks (Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos), Jenkins’ whipray (Pateobatis jenkinsii).

July 20th: 2 Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.), 3 green turtles (C. mydas), hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata), 4 grey reef sharks (C. amblyrhynchos)

July 23rd: 6 Spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris), 9 humpback whales (M.novaeangliae), 200+ spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris), 50+ bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.).

24th of July: Grey reef shark (C. amblyrhynchos), 2 Jenkins’ whiprays (P. jenkinsii)

27th of July: 3 Humpback whales (M. novaeangliae), hawksbill turtle (E. imbricata), 7 bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.), 2 leopard whipray (Himantura leopard), giant guitarfish (Rhynchobatus djiddensis), loggerhead turtle (C. caretta). 

28th of July: 2 Reef manta rays (Mobula alfredi), 2 humpback whales (M. novaeangliae), bull shark (Carcharhinus leucas), 2 oceanic blacktip sharks (Carcharhinus limbatus).

1st of August: Green turtle (C. mydas), 3 grey reef sharks (C. amblyrhynchos).

11th of August: Green turtle (C. mydas), 10 humpback whales (M. novaeangliae), 8 spinner dolphins (S. longirostris), 15 bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.).

13th of August: 2 green turtles (C. mydas), 2 grey reef sharks (C. amblyrhynchos), 2 blue-spotted ribbontail rays (Taeniura lymma).

14th of August: 5 humpback whales (M. novaeangliae), green turtle (C. mydas), bull shark (C. leucas), 2 grey reef sharks (C. amblyrhynchos), 2 nurse sharks (Ginglymostoma cirratum), giant guitarfish (R. djiddensis), 6 jenkins whipray (P. jenkinsii), manta ray (M. alfredi).

26th of August: Black marlin (Istiompax indica).

31st of August: Green turtle (C. mydas), 20 spinner dolphins (S. longirostris), loggerhead turtle (C. caretta), -+500 spinner dolphins (Tursiops sp.), 3 tiger sharks (Galeocerdo cuvier), 5 bull sharks (C. leucas), 2 oceanic blacktip sharks (C. limbatus), dugong (Dugong dugon).

Cover photo by Orlando Miranda & Salvador Colvee.

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