Four species day!

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Orca, sperm whale, humpback and dolphins over our two tours

We had two very different tours today out in Breiðafjörður. On the morning tour today we managed to get out to the west of the fjord and saw a number of sperm whales, including two close together. Then, a surprise out in the deep water, we found some orcas travelling close together in the swells. It is a little unusual to see the orcas out in the very deep water as usually they are much closer to land. We had a great last look at them as they surfaced near the boat. Then, an extra treat we saw a small group of white-beaked dolphins on our way home.

The wind had picked up in the afternoon and so we stayed in the shelter of the fjord and found a humpback whale that is well known in the north of Iceland. This whale has a lot of rake marks on its tail, which are the result of an unsuccessful orca attack. It is very unlikely this would have happened here around Iceland as the orcas we see are mostly eating herring and other fish, but somewhere on its long migration to the breeding grounds this whale has met orcas that will feed on whales. Luckily it survived this and it has left some incredible marks on the under-side of the tail. This is how we identify individual humpbacks and this one is very distinctive. It is known as ‘Tattoo’ when seen in Skalfandi Bay in the north of Iceland.

Judith (Tour guide)

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