On the drive from Barcelona to VIlanova, the sky was grey with the sun poking through the clouds occasionally. Maybe not the best day to head out to sea? Upon arrival in Vilanova however, the sky had cleared up and we were met at the Azimut stand by Lluis, Mireia, Adela, Jordi, Gemma, Maria, Isabel and Manelaccompanied by Oscar, Montse, Vicki and Oriol.
The sea was flat with a very light sea breeze, perfect for spotting marine life, not so great for remaining cool under an extremely strong sun. Underway, we raised the main sail to provide a bit of shade, absolutely necessary in the June heat.
Today was a day of Cormorants (Phalacrocorax sp.), we spotted several sun bathing and drying their feathers whilst floating out at sea. Other birds spotted throughout the day included a Northern gannet (Morus bassanus) and various species of sea gull.
As we were heading out to the furthest point on our transect one of our guests on board, X, spotted a splash in the distance. We motored over to sea what we could find and there we spotted a small group of Striped Dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba), around 5 individuals. They were cruising along at a really slow speed before changing directions sharply along the surface. Feeding behaviour? One of the dolphins put on an jumping display for us, jumping and twisting in the air in a show of play. Apart from this one display, the group were not interested in interacting with the boat, preferring to swim slowly and calmly along the surface of the water. We watched from a distance for about X minutes before returning to our transect.
No other cetaceans were spotted on the day, although we were treated to an aerial display by a sword fish (Xiphias gladius). that exploded out of the water on six or seven occasions. We were also lucky to see a flying fish (Dactylopterus volitans) that must have travelled over 50 metres along the water surface before disappearing into the blue.
One sad note was the amount of human created pollution that was in the water. Weird foam on the surface as well as a lot of plastic, especially in the zone closer to the coastline.