A whale calf entered the Ría de Arousa yesterday and reached the port of Xufre on the Illa. Members of the Coordinator for the Study of Marine Mammals (Cemma), from the ground and BDRI, Bottlenose Dolphin Research Institute based in O Grove, approached the area to check that it was not stranded. The three-meter-long specimen was never seen again, so the scientists trust that it left the port without problems. In the next few days they will continue with the sightings to try to locate it. The presence of whales is increasingly frequent off the coast of Galicia.
The first to arrive in the area were the members of the Cemma, after being alerted by a submariner named Yago who came to film the whale. "It got into a very shallow place and we activated all the protocols of action in the fear that it could be stranded," explains Alfredo López, a biologist at Cemma. But fortunately between 12.30 and 15.00 hours nobody saw the horse again, which indicates that he managed to leave the port on his own.
Bruno Díaz, director of the BDRI, explains that it is normal to find minke whales in Galician waters. However, he points out that it is not so frequent that they enter the estuary, getting so close to the port. "It could be that being a small specimen, was somewhat disoriented in the absence of experience," he says. The boats of the BDRI travel the Galician coasts to study the whales. At the beginning of spring, with the outcrop of the plankton, the presence of these cetaceans increases. "Little by little the bigger specimens will arrive, but the minke whales are seen all year round," says Díaz. The BDRI scientists usually observe them near another island, Sálvora, located at the mouth of the Ria Arosa.
Whaling has been linked to the Galician economy since the Middle Ages until just 32 years ago, when global overfishing was about to make disappear the largest animals on the planet. After a long period of time in which only occasional sightings occurred, for a couple of years the whales have returned to the Galician coasts. In September 2017, a group of fishermen recorded a blue whale near the town of Muros, the largest whale that crosses the oceans, between 24 and 27 meters long and weighing 100 or 120 tons. . It was the first time that it was sighted in the Community since the prohibition of hunting. That same year, from the boats of the BDRI made up to five sightings of blue whales, more than 60 of rorcuales common, four rorcuales from Malaga, 11 rorcuales caliblancos and two humpback whales. . (tagsToTranslate) whale (t) iilla (t) arousa