Azores : Opener

Update from our marine conservation volunteering holiday in the Azores archipelago, working on whales, dolphins and turtles

It’s time for the initial introductions. I am Craig Turner and I’ll be your Expedition Leader in the Azores this year. On the first group, I will also be joined by Henry Taylor (Expedition Leader in training). It is great to be going back to the Azores after a few years’ break and escape the ongoing Scottish winter – I‘ll be making tracks earlier than expected as more snow is forecast, which could otherwise hamper my journey to the airport!

I am currently organising and packing my kit, checking that I have all I need for the next month – so don’t forget to check the project dossier. It will be great to meet up with old friends and colleagues from previous years, not least, our scientist Lisa Steiner. If you want to find cetaceans in the Azores, then she is the person to find them. If you have seen the latest project report and Lisa’s recent publications or the 2022 Azores expedition roundup, then you’ll know, not what to expect, but what we hope to record. Last year, you’ll note they had a variety of records – so you never can be too sure what ‘data’ we will collect. Just cross your fingers for good weather….

We arrive on Friday morning, a couple of days before we meet the first group, in order to set up the expedition headquarters. I’ll send around another message once I hit the ground in Horta and confirm my local contact details.

This reminds me to mention communications on the island. There’s cell/mobile reception on Faial in addition to internet via public hotpots and free WiFi in most cafes. Hopefully, you can resist the need for frequent international comms, and just soak up the experience of Atlantic island isolation.

I hope you’ve all been eagerly reading your expedition materials and know to bring many layers of clothing. As to the weather, think Vivaldi ‘The Four Seasons”, so prepare for warm, cold, wet and dry – sometimes on the same day. Don’t forget your sunglasses or your waterproof trousers – you’ll thank me when you are stationed on the bow of the boat as a lookout and the weather is choppy (so also bring your motion sickness pills/patches – if you know you need them!).

So with the local team in place, whale sightings already logged by Lisa, all we are missing is you. It will be great to meet you all and I’ll send along another update very soon.

Here’s to another month working back in the EU!

Safe travels group 1…

Craig & Henry
Expedition Leaders

Update from our marine conservation volunteering holiday in the Azores archipelago, working on whales, dolphins and turtles

Some photo impressions of the 2023 expedition:

One Reply to “Azores : Opener”

  1. I joined the expedition in 2019 and have so many lovely memories. Craig, Lisa, Jairo, Jim and Claudia are fantastic, you’re sure to have a wonderful experience!! Have fun and wish you a lot of good sightings!! 🙂

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