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Pilot Whales Poem 

Three weeks in Tenerife, it’s really quite a tale,

Every day I’d see another pilot whale.

On Peter Pan and Eden, I really saw a lot,

Learning more about them, with each and every shot.


The delphindae family is where pilot whales belong

But to call them the largest members would in fact be wrong.

Exceeded in size by orcas, also the blackfish group

Whales that really belong to the dolphin troupe.


Up to one thousand pilot whales have been found off this coast

Living in family groups, made up of ten to twenty at most.

A lifespan of 45 years, and 60 for females.

A matriarchal lifestyle is the norm for these toothed whales.


A forward dorsal fin, bulbous head no beak Like a human fingerprint, every whale unique.

With males at 5.5m, and females 3.7

Encountering these creatures was a kind of heaven.

Hunting when its late, their dives deep and dark,


Their advanced echolocation keeps them on the mark.

Catching giant squid, where there is no light

Days are spent resting after a busy night. 12 to 15 months is the period for gestation

And it’s only ten minutes to the Oroteanda petrol station


Calving occurs once every 3 to 5 years

Sometimes calves are seen by volunteers.

Although not endangered, some are in captivity

Others are killed through hunting activity


But happy pilot whales is what we want to see

Living in the wild, merry and free.

Three weeks of weird men and a lot of interpretative dance,

My time here has been a lot better than France.


I won’t forget you, doughnut and belly-rubbing man

Thanks for the fun Frontier, and the decent tan.


By Jen Shaw - Tenerife Whale & Dolphin Conservation Volunteer

Frontier runs conservationdevelopmentteaching and adventure travel projects in over 70 countries worldwide - so join us and explore the world!

See more from our volunteers #Frontiervolunteer

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