slide1

premiosapom

EMYA yelow nominee 2014 23

Virtual Tour

Come and Meet Us!

Rede de Arrojamentos de Cetáceos do Arquipélago da Madeira

R.A.C.A.M.

Madeira cetacean stranding network

contacts:

291 961 859 / 924 432 091

The sub-order Odontoceti includes several species of dolphins, porpoises, and the sperm whale. The aforementioned species use the waters around the archipelago as a feeding and breeding area. Some species have a seasonal presence (such as the common dolphin) and others an annual residence (like the bottlenose dolphin).

 

Sperm Whale

Common name (Portuguese) : Cachalote
Scientific name :Physeter macrocephalus(Linnaeus, 1758)
Common name (English): Sperm Whale

Length (Adult)- 11m (♀) - 15m / (Calf)- 4m (♂)


Weight (Adult)- 20 000kg (♀) - 40 000kg (♂)

Cachalote

Sperm Whale
Description:
The blowhole is located at the left side of the head, causing a 45º  forward angular slightly to the left blow.
The body coloration is dark-grey to brown. The skin is rough looking from the pectoral fins to the caudal peduncle.
Block-shaped head.
Bulky and has no beak.
The dorsal fin is practically non-existent and the pectoral fins are small.
Triangular-shaped fluke which is completely visible out of the water when it dives.

Ecology:
Occurs in deep waters where they are believed to be able to reach 3000 m in depth in order to capture pelagic cephalopods, which are their main prey. The larger males may remain 1h30m without breathing and females 45min. The adult males tend to form small groups or are solitary, while females with calves and immature males form groups of 20 or more animals. They are usually less active when at surface. They move at about 3 to 5 knots. They can socialize at the surface for several hours.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Vulnerable / Vulnerable.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Protected Fauna Species (appendix III)..

Threats
:
Population decay over the last 3 generations and collisions in places of high maritime traffic. In Madeira, there is also the ingestion of anthropogenic materials (e.g. plastics).

Distribution:
Cosmopolitan
Female and immature males groups and females generally inhabit the waters between 40 ° S and 42 ° N latitudes. The adult males move up to higher latitudes.

Presence in the Region:
Common
It is observed regularly in the waters of the Madeira archipelago. The region is used as a crossing point, feeding and socializing spot as well as to give birth to calves.

Occurrence throughout the year:
Periodic

Pygmy Sperm Whale

Common name (Portuguese): Cachalote-pigmeu
Scientific name : Kogia breviceps(Blainville, 1838)
Common name (English): Pygmy Sperm Whale

Length Adult- 3m /Calf- 1,2m


Weight Adults- 350kg

Cachalote-pigmeu

Pygmy Sperm Whale
Description:
Small but robust body. Dark coloured in the dorsal region, in contrast with the white colouring on the ventral surface.
Conical shaped snout when viewed from above.
Bracket mark between the eye and the pectoral fin.
Dorsal fin is rather small and is located at the beginning of the posterior region.

Ecology:
It occurs preferably off the continental shelf. It tends to form small groups up to 6 animals or is solitary. The diet consists of cephalopods, but it can also include benthic invertebrates and demersal fishes.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Least Concern / Data Deficient.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
Small scale direct capture, by-catch and lack of knowledge of the biology of this species. Unknown in Madeira.

Distribution:
Generally occurs in temperate and tropical waters, preferably off the continental shelf, where the oceanic islands are included.

Presence in the Region:Occasional
The inconspicuous behaviour of this species (e.g. avoids vessels) makes it difficult to be observed at sea. Its occurrence is considered occasional due to the low number of sightings, which may be unrelated to the number of animals that use the waters of Madeira.

Occurrence throughout the year:Undetermined
The reduced sightings frequency and stranding of this species in the seas of the Madeira archipelago, associated with an irregular distribution throughout the year, is insufficient to establish the pattern of annual occurrence.

Dwarf sperm whale

Common name (Portuguese): Cachalote-anão
Scientific name: Kogia simus
Common name (English): Dwarf sperm whale


Length (Adult): 
2.5m / (Calf):1m

Weight (Adult): 
200kg

Cachalote-anão
Dwarf sperm whale
Description:
The body characteristics and behaviour are similar to the pygmy sperm whale (see pygmy sperm whale) and it might be easily confused. However, unlike the pygmy sperm whale, dwarf sperm whales have a prominent dorsal fin located in the middle of the back.

Ecology, Distribution, Legal Protection Status e Threats:
Similar to the pygmy sperm whale (see pygmy sperm whale).

Conservation Status (IUCN) – Global / Regional
Data deficient / Data deficient

Presence in the Region:
Rare
The only record is related to a stranded individual in August 2000.

Occurrence throughout the year:
Undetermined

Cuvier's Beaked Whale

 

Common name (Portuguese): Zífio
Scientific name: Ziphius cavirostris(Cuvier, 1823)
Common name (English): Cuvier's Beaked Whale

Length (Adult)- 6m / (Calf)- 2,3m


Weight (Adult)- 2 500kg

Zífio

Description:

·        
Long and robust body. The body coloration is dark-grey to brown.

·         The coloration of the head may be lighter, and varies from light blue-grey to pink.

·         The head has a small concavity near the blowhole and it ends in a short and prominent beak.

·         The jaw-line is slightly upturned.

·         Males have two small teeth erupting out of the bottom jaw.

·         It can be easily confused with other species of beaked whales. The shape of the head and the beak make their identification easier.

·         The fluke lacks the median notch.


Ecology:
Occurs mainly off the continental shelf in deep waters. It performs deep dives and it may remain up to 90% of the time under water are the most sighted ones. It tends to form small groups of 3 to 7 individuals. Solitary animals. It normally avoids vessels, hampering its study. Much of the information known about its biology comes from strandings and opportunistic observations. The diet consists of deep-water species, mainly cephalopods and fish.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Data deficient / Data deficient.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
Lack of knowledge of the biology of the species. Recent mortality cases associated with naval military exercises in various locations, including the Madeira archipelago, where there were also reported cases of direct mortality, vessels collision and ingestion of anthropogenic materials (e.g. plastics).

Distribution:
Occurs in temperate and tropical waters.

Presence in the Region:Occasional
The inconspicuous behaviour of this species (e.g. avoids vessels) makes it difficult to be observed at sea. Its occurrence is considered occasional due to the low number of sightings, which may be unrelated to the number of animals that use the waters of Madeira.

Occurrence throughout the year:Undetermined
The reduced sightings frequency and stranding of this species in the seas of the Madeira archipelago, associated with an irregular distribution throughout the year, is insufficient to establish the pattern of annual occurrence.

Sowerby's Beaked Whale

Common name (Portuguese): Baleia-de-bico-de-garrafa ou Baleia-de-bico-de-sowerby
Scientific name:
Mesoplodon bidens(Sowerby, 1804)
Common name (English):  
Sowerby's Beaked Whale

Length Adult-
4,5m /Calf- 2,4 m

Weight Adult- 1100kg

Baleia-de-bico-de-garrafa ou Baleia-de-bico-de-sowerby

Sowerby's Beaked Whale
Description


·        
Elongated body, taller than wider.

·         General body coloration varies from dark grey to bluish, slightly lighter on the ventral surface.

·         The head ends in a long beak.

·         The inferior jaw protrudes slightly outwards compared to the upper jaw. A pair of teeth found only in adult males, is positioned far back in the lower jaw.

·         It has a pair of throat grooves.

·         When it surfaces the beak appears first.

·         The fluke lacks the median notch.

·         It can be easily confused with other species of beaked whales, especially the Mesoplodon genus. The shape of the beak and the mouth line help distinguish the species, as well as the position of the teeth when existing and visible.


Ecology:
Preferentially occurs in deeper areas. The little information thus far, demonstrates the formation of small groups, of 1 to 2 individuals. Normally reclusive, it stays away from vessels, hampering its study. Much of the information known about its biology comes from strandings and opportunistic observations. Their diet consists of deep-water species, mainly cephalopods and fish.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Data deficient / Not evaluated.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
Virtually unknown. Pollution and the lack of knowledge of the biology of the species. Unknown in Madeira.

Distribution:
Occurs in cold and temperate waters of the North Atlantic. The archipelago is the southern limit of its distribution.

Presence in the Region:
Rare
The difficulty in differentiating this species from other beaked whales (especially the Mesoplodon genus) at sea, is an obstacle to the study of their presence in the region and its occurrence throughout the year. There is only one confirmed sighting of this species in the waters of Madeira.

Occurrence throughout the year:
Undetermined

Blainville's Beaked Whale

Common name (Portuguese): Baleia-de-bico-grosso ou Baleia-de-bico-de-blainville
Scientific name: 
Mesoplodon densirostris(Blainville, 1817)
Common name (English):  
Blainville's Beaked Whale

Length Adult-
4,5m /Calf- 2m

Weight Adult- 800kg

Baleia-de-bico-grosso ou Baleia-de-bico-de-blainville

Blainville's Beaked Whale
Description


·        
Elongated body, taller than wider. Body coloration varies from dark grey to black, and is slightly lighter in the ventral surface.

·         The head ends in a long beak.

·         The inferior jaw protrudes outwards and overlaps the upper jaw. A pair of teeth found only in adult males, is positioned far back in the lower jaw.

·         It has a pair of throat grooves.

·         When it surfaces the beak appears first.

·         The fluke lacks the median notch.

·         It can be easily confused with other species of beaked whales, especially the Mesoplodon genus. The shape of the beak and the mouth line help distinguish the species, as well as the position of the teeth when existing and visible.


Ecology:
Occurs in deep waters. It tends to form small groups of 1 to 6 individuals, usually not exceeding ten individuals. Normally reclusive, it stays away from vessels, hampering its study. Much of the information known about its biology comes from strandings and opportunistic observations. Their diet consists of deep-water species, mainly cephalopods and fish.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Data deficient / Not evaluated.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
Virtually unknown. Pollution and the lack of knowledge of the biology of the species. Unknown in Madeira.

Distribution:
Globally occurs in temperate and tropical waters.

Presence in the Region:
Occasional
The difficulty in differentiating this species from other beaked whales (especially the Mesoplodon genus) at sea, is an obstacle to the study of their presence in the region and its occurrence throughout the year. There are several confirmed sightings of this species in Madeira, especially adult males with an arched lower jaw and visible teeth.

Occurrence throughout the year:
Undetermined

Gervais' beaked whale

Common name (Portuguese): Baleia-de-bico-de-gervais
Scientific name: Mesoplodon europaeus
Common name (English): Gervais' beaked whale

Length (Adult):4.5 - 5.2m / Calf
: 1.6 – 2.2m

Weight (Adult):1 – 2 tons

Baleia-de-bico-de-gervais




Gervais' beaked whale

Description:

T
he body characteristics and behaviour are similar to the previously mentioned beaked whale species of the Mesoplodon  genus (see respective information) and can be easily confused.
The mouth line is remarkably straight and a pair of teeth found only in adult males, erupt in the lower jaw towards the tip of the beak (unlike the Sowerby's beaked whale adult male whose teeth are far back) make them easy to be identified.

Ecology, Conservation Status, Legal Protection Status e Threats:

Similar to other species of beaked whales belonging to the Mesoplodon genus previously described (see respective information).

Distribution: 
Deep subtropical and warm temperate waters in the Atlantic.

Presence in the Region: 
Rare

There are only two strandings, a female and a male in April and May 2007 respectively.

Occurrence throughout the year: 
Undetermined

Killer Whale

Common name (Portuguese): Orca ou Roaz-da-bandeira
Traditional name in Madeira: 
Quelha
Scientific name: 
Orcinus orca(Linnaeus, 1758)

Length (Adult)-
7m (♀) - 8,5m (♂) / (Calf)- 2,2 m

Weight (Adult) - 3 800kg (♀) - 6 000kg (♂)

Orca
Killer Whale
Description
The back is black in contrast with the back and an elliptic-shaped white spot behind the eye and a dark grey patch behind the dorsal fin.
White ventral surface.
Prominent and triangularly shaped dorsal fin and it can reach up to 2m in males and 0.8 in females.
Pectoral fins are large and rounded. The body is quite robust and the head is round with no beak.

Ecology:
Generally gregarious species, often sighted in groups of fewer than 40 individuals. They may demonstrate segregation by sex and maturity, and also sexual dimorphism. They are active individuals, very agile and fast swimming around 12 to 25 knots. Rarely accompany vessels. Active and voracious predators they are at the top of the food chain of marine ecosystems. Their diet is diverse, consisting of squid, fish, birds, seals, turtles and even small and large cetaceans. They have efficient group hunting techniques.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Least concern / Data deficient.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bonn Convention – North-east Atlantic population has an unfavourable conservation status (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
Pollution, increase in maritime traffic and by-catch in fishing activities. Unknown in Madeira.

Distribution:Cosmopolitan.
Sighted in tropical waters and in the open sea, however is more abundant in coastal waters and at higher latitudes.

Presence in the Region:Occasional
Uses the region as a feeding and/or crossing point. It is not frequently sighted in the waters of the Madeira archipelago.

Occurrence throughout the year:Undetermined
Despite this species’ frequency in the Madeira Archipelago is reduced, it has already been sighted in different seasons of the year.

 

Pygmy killer whale

Common name (Portuguese): Orca-pigmeia
Scientific name: Feresa attenuata
Common name (English): Pygmy killer whale

Length (Adult):2.3m / (Calf): 0.8m

Weight (Adults):150kg


Pygmy killer whale
Description:
Similar size to that of most dolphins, and are easily confused with the melon-headed whale.
It has a dark dorsal patch and white “lips”. Very rounded head without beak.


Ecology:
It is a little known species and rarely seen in nature. It is difficult to approach and is an active swimmer. Evidence suggests that it is a dolphins’ predator.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II)

Conservation Status (IUCN) – Global / Regional
Least concern / Data deficient

Distribution:
Tropical and sub-tropical waters.

Presence in the Region:
Rare
There is only one sighting of a group in May 2009.

Occurrence throughout the year:
Undetermined

Short-finned pilot whale

Common name (Portuguese): Baleia-piloto-tropical
Traditional name in Madeira: Boca-de-panela
Scientific name: Globicephala macrorhynchus(Gray, 1846)
Common name (English): Short-finned pilot whale

Length (Adult)- 4,5m / (Calf)- 1,5m

Weight (Adult)
- 2 500kg


Boca-de-panela ou Baleia-piloto-tropical
Short-finned pilot whale

Description

·         Dark-grey to black coloration with a light grey patch behind the dorsal fin.

·         The head has a bulbous melon with a barely noticeable beak.

·         The dorsal fin is slightly raised, rounded, with a very broad insertion base, located in the forward part of the body. This fin forms an obtuse angle with the anterior dorsal region.

·         They are more corpulent than any other species of dolphins.

·         The ends of the pectoral fins do not extend past the base of the dorsal fin.


Ecology:
This species inhabits coastal and oceanic waters. It is also a gregarious species, frequently found in groups ranging from a few to several dozens of individuals. They may demonstrate segregation by sex and maturity. Not an active species, it does not come close to vessels. Its diet is based on pelagic cephalopods, although it occasionally eats fish (up to 45 kg per day). They sometimes mix with bottlenose dolphins.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Least concern / Least concern.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
By-catch in fishing activities and pollution. The impact of fishing activities is unknown in Madeira however a less appropriate code of conduct by maritime tourism operators may induce stress.

Distribution:Generally occurs in tropical and warm temperate waters. The species does not occur in the Mediterranean Sea.

Presence in the Region:Common
Groups with calves, feeding, resting or socializing are frequently sighted.

Occurrence throughout the year:Permanent
In the Madeira Archipelago it occurs all year round but not as frequently as the bottlenose dolphin.


False Killer Whale

Common name (Portuguese): Falsa-orca ou Orca-bastarda
Scientific name: Pseudorca crassidens(Owen, 1846)
Common name (English): False Killer Whale

Length (Adult)- 5m / (Calf)- 1,6m


Weight (Adult)- 1 500kg

Falsa-orca ou Orca-bastarda

False Killer Whale
Description


·        
Dark-grey to black coloration.

·         Elongated and spindle body.

·         Tapered head with a barely noticeable melon and beak.

·         The dorsal fin is raised and pointed, with an insertion base located in the central part of the body.

·         It bends its caudal peduncle when diving.


Ecology:
This species inhabits oceanic waters. It is also a gregarious species, frequently found in groups ranging from a few to several dozens of individuals. They may demonstrate segregation by sex and maturity. This species inhabits oceanic waters. It is also a gregarious species, frequently found in groups ranging from a few to several dozens of individuals. They may demonstrate segregation by sex and maturity. Very agile and fast swimming individuals. They may accompany the vessels. They are active and voracious predators, which hunt in groups. Capture prey such as large tuna, ray-finned fishes, marlin, cephalopods and other marine mammals too.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Least concern / Not evaluated.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
Small scale direct capture and by-catch. Unknown in Madeira.

Distribution:
Generally occurs in temperate and tropical waters, usually between 50 ° S and 50 ° N. Occurs in the Mediterranean Sea.

Presence in the Region:
Occasional
Uses the region as crossing and/or feeding point. It is not frequently observed in the waters of the archipelago of Madeira.

Occurrence throughout the year:
Seasonal
Despite the low frequency of this species in the seas of the Madeira archipelago, it has been sighted in different seasons. The species has been mainly observed in the summer months.

Risso's Dolphin

Common name (Portuguese): Grampo
Traditional name in Madeira: Alvarinho
Scientific name: Grampus griseus(Cuvier, 1812)
Common name (English): Risso's Dolphin

Length (Adult)- 3,2m / (Calf)- 1,3m


Weight (Adult)- 400Kg

Grampo

Risso's Dolphin
Description


·         Its coloration is predominantly grey, but it becomes lighter due to scar accumulation almost covering the entire body.

·         The head is rounded, without a noticeable beak.

·         The dorsal fin is elevated, pointed and dark.

·         Their bodies are more robust than most dolphins.


Ecology:
Generally oceanic species sometimes associated with seamounts of great productivity. It is a gregarious species, forms groups of a few to several tens of individuals. They are less active animals that rarely approach vessels. Their diet is based on cephalopods, therefore they have a reduced dentition. Due to scar accumulation over the years, they gradually become lighter, having an almost white head.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Data deficient / Data deficient.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
Small scale direct capture and by-catch as well as pollution. Unknown in Madeira.

Distribution:
Generally occurs in temperate and tropical waters, between 40 ° S and 60 ° N. Also occurs in the Mediterranean Sea.

Presence in the Region:Occasional
Uses the region as a feeding point. Very uncommon species in the waters of the Madeira archipelago.

Occurrence throughout the year:
Seasonal

The few recorder sightings occurred during the sumemer months.




Bottlenose Dolphin

Common name (Portuguese): Roaz ou Roaz-corvineiro
Traditional name in Madeira: Bôto
Scientific name: Tursiops truncatus(Montagu, 1821)
Common name (English): Bottlenose Dolphin

Length (Adult)- 3m / (Calf)- 1m


Weight (Adult)- 350Kg

Roaz ou Roaz-corvineiro

Bottlenose Dolphin
Description


·         The head has a rounded frontal melon, presenting a profound notch separating the beak of the forehead.

·         The beak is short and thick.

·         The inferior jaw is prominent in comparison to the upper jaw.

·         Dark grey coloration in the back.

·         The belly is lighter, ranging from white to pink.

·         Robust body.


Ecology:
Bottlenose dolphin is a common species that occurs near the coast and in oceanic zones, generally in islands. They may demonstrate segregation by sex and maturity. Gregarious species, forms either small groups or groups with a few dozen individuals although groups of several hundreds of individuals have been reported. Some individuals form mixed groups with sperm whales where they are usually outnumbered. They are not fast swimmers, but when they are feeding its speed reaches 25 knots. They interact with vessels. Their diet is based on small fish and cephalopods. Appears to be opportunistic in prey choice.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Data deficient / Least concern.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection of species and habitat (appendix II); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
Direct capture, by-catch in fishing activities, habitat changes and pollution. In Madeira there are occasional cases of interaction with fisheries, direct mortality and stress caused by maritime tourism vessels.

Distribution:
Temperate and tropical waters of the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Oceans. Also occurs in the Mediterranean and Black Sea.

Presence in the Region:
Quite common
Uses the area for feeding, breeding and socializing. It is a common species in all waters of the archipelago, coming very close to shore.

Occurrence throughout the year:
Permanent
In Madeira archipelago it is possible to sight this species year-round. Photo-identification studies carried out by the Whale Museum point to the existence of individuals that regularly use these waters. There is an increase in the number of sightings during spring and summer due to the presence of transient groups.

Caldeirão

Common name (Portuguese): Caldeirão
Scientific name: Steno bredanensis(Lesson, 1828)
Common name (English): Rough-toothed Dolphin

Length (Adult)- 2,3m / (Calf)
- 1m

Weight (Adult)- 130Kg

Caldeirão

Rough-toothed Dolphin
Description


·         The head has a long beak and it has no distinct frontal melon.

·         The dorsal fin is large and prominent as well as the pectoral fins.

·         It has a very light coloration on the lower jaw and lips in shades of white or pink.

·         Its coloration is characterised by a dark pattern on the dorsal area, contrasting with the light blue grey flanks.


Ecology:
Typically oceanic species that occurs close to coast in islands. Gregarious species, often sighted in groups of 10 to 20 individuals, however they may occur in agglomerations of more than 50 individuals. Their diet is based on small fish and cephalopods.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Data deficient / Data deficient.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
Small scale direct capture and by-catch. Unknown in Madeira.

Distribution:
Generally occurs in temperate and tropical waters, between 35 ° S and 40 ° N. Also occurs in the Mediterranean Sea.

Presence in the Region:
Rare
Uses the region as a feeding point. The frequency of sightings of this species in the archipelago of Madeira is reduced. The low number of sightings may be indicative of the low number of animals moving from tropical waters to Madeira as well as their transient presence. They were observed while feeding in these waters.

Occurrence throughout the year:
 Irregular
Occasionally present in the seas of Madeira archipelago. Although the data is insufficient to define preferred seasons, the few recorded sightings occurred in Summer.

Short-beaked Common Dolphin

Common name: Golfinho-comum
Traditional name in Madeira: Toninha ou Antoninha
Scientific name: Delphinus delphis(Linnaeus, 1758)
Common name (English): Short-beaked Common Dolphin

Length (Adult)- 2m / (Calf)- 0,8m


Weight (Adult):100Kg

Golfinho-comum
Short-beaked Common Dolphin
Description


·         Yellowish pattern on the flanks between the eye and dorsal fin, easily visible when they are breaching.

·         It has a dark grey cape along the back that creates a "V" just below the dorsal fin on either side of the body.

·         The posterior flanks and caudal peduncle are light grey.

·         The belly is white. Their beak is prominent, slender and dark coloured.

·         Tall, dark dorsal fin, often with a lighter patch in the centre.


Ecology:
Gregarious species sighted in groups of one to several tens of animals in Madeira, however they may form groups of hundreds of individuals. The size of the groups varies seasonally and it depends on the time of day. They are very active, often interacting with vessels. Their diet is based on small fish and cephalopods. When they are looking for food they move at an average speed of 5 knots, but at top speed they may reach 25 knots.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Least concern / Least concern.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
Direct capture, by-catch in fishing activities, habitat changes and pollution. In Madeira there are occasional cases of interaction with fisheries, direct mortality and death by ingestion of anthropogenic materials (e.g. plastics).

Distribution:
Occurs globally in temperate, subtropical and tropical seas, between 40ºN and 40ºS, except in the North Atlantic where it is sighted above 60ºN. It is sighted in the Mediterranean and Black Sea.

Presence in the Region:Quite common
Very common species in the waters of Madeira, where it develops a set of activities such as feeding, socialization and reproduction.

Occurrence throughout the year:Seasonal
The animals are sighted quite frequently in the waters of the Madeira archipelago in the winter and spring. It can be sighted more rarely at other times of the year.




Striped Dolphin

Common name (Portuguese): Golfinho-riscado
Traditional name in Madeira: Toninha ou Antoninha
Scientific name: Stenella coeruleoalba(Meyen, 1833)
Common name (English): Striped Dolphin

Length (Adult)- 2,1m / (Calf)- 1m


Weight (Adult)- 120Kg

Golfinho-riscado

Striped Dolphin
Description


·         It has a long and thin stripe that begins in the eye and ends in the posterior ventral region.

·         It has a second stripe that is smaller that goes from the eye to the base of the pectoral fin.

·         Its back is dark, its belly is light and its posterior region is greyish.

·         All the individuals have a lighter stroke-shaped patch (genus characteristic) on the back, beneath the dorsal fin.

·         The beak is prominent and dark.


Ecology:
Typically oceanic species. They may demonstrate segregation by sex and maturity. Gregarious species sighted in groups of one to several tens of animals, however they may form groups of hundreds of individuals. They are quite active interacting very little with vessels. They breach when on the move and are very fast (up to 28 knots). Their die tis based in small fish and cephalopods.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Least concern / Data deficient.

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
By-catch in fishing activities, especially in purse seine fisheries and gillnets. Unknown in Madeira

Distribution:
Occurs globally in temperate and tropical seas, between 40ºN and 40ºS, except in the North Atlantic where it is sighted above 60ºN. It is sighted in the Mediterranean Sea.

Presence in the Region:
 Common
Regular species in all waters of the Madeira archipelago, they form mixed groups with the common dolphin and the Atlantic spotted dolphin where they are usually outnumbered. They have been sighted when feeding.

Occurrence throughout the year:
 Seasonal
They occur in Madeira in periods of greater presence of common dolphins (late winter and spring) and Atlantic spotted dolphins (Summer). Nevertheless, they can be observed sporadically during other times of the year.

Atlantic Spotted Dolphin

Common name (Portuguese): Golfinho-pintado ou Golfinho-malhado-do-atlântico
Traditional name in Madeira: Toninha ou Antoninha
Scientific name: Stenella frontalis(Cuvier, 1829)
Common name (English): Atlantic Spotted Dolphin

Length (Adult)- 2m / (Calf)- 0,9m


Weight (Adult)around 120Kg

Golfinho-pintado ou Golfinho-malhado-do-atlântico

Atlantic Spotted Dolphin
Description


·         Greyish with white spots on the dorsal area of the animal and lighter coloured with grey spots on the ventral region.

·         The number of spots increases with age.

·         Younger dolphins have a white or rosy coloration on the belly.

·         All individuals have a lighter stroke-shaped patch on the back (Genus characteristic) on the back, beneath the dorsal fin.

·         Prominent and elongated beak.


Ecology:
The oceanic form of this species, which is the one that occurs in the seas of the Madeira archipelago, is smaller and less painted. Gregarious species, often sighted in groups ranging from tens to a few hundred individuals. Very active, frequently accompany the vessels and display very acrobatic aerial behaviours. They can easily swim at 18 knots. Their diet is based on small fish and cephalopods.

Conservation Status (IUCN) - Global / Regional:
Data deficient / Least concern

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:
Direct capture, by-catch in fishing activities, habitat changes and pollution. In Madeira there are occasional cases of interaction with fisheries, direct mortality and death by ingestion of anthropogenic materials (e.g. plastics).

Distribution:
Tropical and temperate waters of the Atlantic Ocean (East, Central and West), approximately between 45 ° N and 20 ° S. It is not observed in the Mediterranean Sea.

Presence in the Region:Quite common
Fairly common species in all waters of Madeira, where it develops a set of activities such as feeding, socialization and reproduction.

Occurrence throughout the year: 
Seasonal
Quite common animals in the waters of Madeira during Spring and Summer they may, however, be observed less frequently at other times of the year.

Fraser's Dolphin

Common name (Portuguese): Golfinho-de-Fraser
Scientific name: Lagenodelphis hosei(Fraser, 1956)
Common name (English): Fraser's Dolphin

Length (Adult)– 2,7m/ (Calf) – 1m


Weight (Adult)– 160kg

Golfinho-de-Fraser


Fraser's Dolphin
Description:
Very short beak.
Small and straight triangular-shaped dorsal fin in males and sickle-shaped in females.
Short and black pectoral fins.
A black stripe runs along the head to the anus.

Ecology:It is a gregarious species that forms groups of 100 to 1000 individuals and it is associated with several other cetacean species. It feeds on fish, squid and crustaceans.

Conservation Status (IUCN) – Global/Regional:
Least concern

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Protected Fauna Species (appendix III).

Threats: 
By-catch in fishing activities and pollution.

Distribution: 
Occurs mainly in tropical and sub-subtropical waters worldwide.

Presence in the Region:
Rare
The presence of this species in Madeira, although rare is not unexpected because this archipelago is the geographical limit of its distribution
.

Occurrence throughout the year:
 Undetermined

There are some recorded sightings for this species but its occurrence is not confirmed by video or photographs. For all these species Madeira is the boundary for their distribution therefore their presence is rare, but not unexpected.

 

There are some recorded sightings for this species but, its occurrence is not confirmed by video or photographs. For all these species Madeira is the boundary for their distribution therefore their presence is rare, but not unexpected.

Long-finned pilot Whale

Common name: Baleia piloto
Traditional name in Madeira: Boca de panela
Scientific name: Globicephala melas(Foster, 1770)

Common name (English): Long-finned pilot Whale

Length (Adults)– 4,5m/ (Calf)– 1,5m


Weight (Adult)
– 2 500kg


Baleia-piloto

Long-finned pilot Whale
Description:


·         The body coloration is dark grey to black, with a light patch behind the dorsal fin.

·         The head is rounded, with a bulbous melon, without a prominent beak.

·         The dorsal fin is slightly raised, rounded and with a wide insertion base located in the anterior region.

·         The pectoral fins are about ¼ of the total body length.


Ecology:
Species that inhabits coastal and oceanic waters. The diet is based on pelagic cephalopods although occasionally they include fish (up to 45 kg per day). This species is very difficult to distinguish from the pilot tropical whale, especially in areas where the distribution is superimposed, just like in Madeira.


Conservation Status (IUCN) – Global/Regional:
Data deficient

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats: 
By-catch in fishing activities and pollution.


Distribution:


Occurs in temperate and sub polar waters. Inhabit waters of the North Atlantic, including the Mediterranean Sea and the North Sea. Also occurs in the southern hemisphere where it has a circumpolar distribution.

Presence in the Region:Rare

There are some unconfirmed sightings of this species, however the fact that it is so easily mistaken with the tropical-pilot whale, makes it possible for its presence to go unnoticed in the region.

Occurrence throughout the year: 
Undetermined

Northern Bottlenose Whale

Common name (Portuguese): Botinhoso
Scientific name: Hyperoodon ampullatus(Foster, 1770)
Common name (English): Northern Bottlenose Whale

Length (Adult)– 7-10m / (Calf)– 3,5m

Weight (Adult)
– 4 000 -7 000kg




Botinhoso

Northern Bottlenose Whale
Description:


·         There is a bulbous melon at the top of the head.

·         The area around the melon is white in adult males

·         It has a prominent beak.

·         Adult males have a whitish collar around the neck.

·         It is the largest of the North Atlantic beaked whales.

·         Adult males have a pair of teeth on the edge of the lower jaw.


Ecology:
The Northern Bottlenose Whale is a species that inhabits the cold, deep waters of the open ocean, continental slope areas and submarine canyons. It feeds mainly on squid, herring and other fish; it is able to perform 1 hour dives.

Conservation Status (IUCN) – Global/Regional: 


Data deficient

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix I); Bern Convention – Strictly Protected Fauna Species (appendix II).

Threats:By-catch in fishing activities and pollution.

Distribution:
This species is found only in the North Atlantic, occurring mainly in cold temperate and subarctic waters and prefers deeper waters.

Presence in the Region:Rare

Rarely observed in the waters of the Madeira archipelago.

Occurrence throughout the year:Undetermined

Melon-headed Whale

Common name (Portuguese): Golfinho-cabeça-de-melão
Scientific name: Peponocephala electra(Gray, 1846)
Common name (English): Melon-headed Whale

Length (Adult)– 2,70m/ (Calf)– 1m


Weight (Adult)
– 200kg

Golfinho-cabeça-de-melão
 
Melon-headed Whale
Description:


·         Small size

·         Non-existent beak

·         Prominent and straight dorsal fin.

·         Black body.


Ecology:
It is a gregarious species, forms groups of several hundred individuals and interacts with other cetacean species, namely with the Fraser's Dolphin. It feeds on fish, squid and crustaceans.



Conservation Status (IUCN) – Global/Regional:


Least Concern

Legal Protection Status:
Species legally protected under the Regional Decree no.6/86/M; Habitats Directive – Strict protection (appendix IV); CITES (appendix II);
Bern Convention – Protected Fauna Species (appendix III).

Threats:


By-catch in fishing activities and pollution.

Distribution:


Occurs mainly in tropical and sub-subtropical waters worldwide.

Presence in the Region:Rare

The presence of this species in Madeira, although rare is not unexpected because this archipelago is the geographical limit of its distribution.

Occurrence throughout the year:Undetermined




Back to the Cetaceans in R.A.M.