12 sperm whale pups were spotted frolicking in the sea north of Minorca on Tuesday by a team of scientists onboard the sailboat Irifi.
The scientists are on an expedition led by Tursiops and WWF within the framework of the ‘Connected Seas’ project which aims to improve the information and knowledge of cetacean populations.
Between June 20 and 30 they sighted 44 sperm whales, including 12 pups and WWT says the high number of baby sperm whales underlines what was observed during last year’s campaign and confirms the International Union for Conservation of Nature, or IUCN’s statement that "these waters are the ideal habitat for the sperm whales to feed and breed.”
“The high presence of social groups with young sperm calves found north of Minorca has urged us to assess whether this situation is constant, both spatially and temporarily and to undertake management actions to protect the area from various aggressors that the species is sensitive to,” said Txema Brotons, Tursiops Scientific Director.
"We have the challenge of implementing management plans for the two largest marine protected areas for cetaceans in Europe in the northwestern Mediterranean, as well as measures to reduce the threats they face," added Oscar Esparza, Coordinator of Marine Protected areas in WWF Spain.
The team saw 32 macrofauna and identified 7 different species of manta ray, loggerhead turtle, bottlenose dolphin, striped dolphin, grey calderon, fin whale and sperm whale, all of which are included in the lists and catalogues of protected species.