WALKING WITH WHALES – TEAM ARRIVES AT WHALE CAMP
BLOG 2 – 27 August 2013 – from Península Valdés
Diego and I drove 17 hours and arrived to Whale Camp at 1 am last night. I have always enjoyed the changes in the landscape as we drive from the big city of Buenos Aires across the pampas to enter the unending plains of this side of Patagonia in southern Argentina.
Arriving to the research station at night is magical. One can hear, but not see, the whales all around. Blows, snores, flipper slaps on the ocean surface and the occasional thunder of a breaching whale in the distance are the normal chorus of our nights in Península Valdés. I went to bed knowing what I would see this morning: a bay full of right whale mothers and calves! The tide is low and the whales are quite far out. Well… “far” in relative terms. The truth is that in a few hours, with the high tide, one can walk along the beach and share the walk with a right whale mother and her calf, who will be only a few meters away. We are blessed to be able to live so close to the whales while we do our work in the field.
Vicky (who arrived yesterday), Diego and I will spend the day cleaning the house, preparing the scientific equipment and planning the research for the rest of the field season. In the evening we will drive to Puerto Madryn.
By Mariano Sironi, Right Whale Program Scientific Director