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Sperm whales feed mainly on large squid, which they find plunging down to more than 2km depth, where they can stay for over an hour! Sperm whales are the largest of the Odontoceti (toothed whales), measuring up to 18m long and weighing 40 tons.

They have a very prominent head that can account for as much as a third of their length and that contains a special oil known as ‘spermaceti’. The spermaceti varies in density depending on the temperature. In the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries sperm whales were hunted for their spermaceti and blubber, highly valued for the production of candles, soap, cosmetics, specialized lubricants, lamp oil, pencils, crayons, leather waterproofing, rust-proofing materials and many pharmaceutical compounds

Sperm whales live in the open sea or above the continental shelf, alone or in small groups (five at most). They can be easily recognized when their tail is seen over the sea surface, just before beginning a deep dive. Due to their deep and long dives, sperm whales are very difficult to sight, so no tourist activities target sperm whales. However, these animals have been occasionally seen in the Sanctuary Area, of which Protofino is part, during general whale-watching trips. In the Strait of Gibraltar they are semi-resident, and are usually located between April and October mostly in the deeper areas of the Strait of Gibraltar, where probably the largest squid are located. In the Canary Islands they can be seen year-round around all islands, although they are more abundant around Gran Canaria, Tenerife and South of Fuerteventura.

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Experience Europe's marine wildlife


Private Surf Lesson in Deba

Spain Basque Country

SSI Open Water Diver Course in Lanzarote

Spain Canary Islands Lanzarote

First-Time Scuba Dive in Tenerife

Spain Canary Islands Tenerife

Discover Diving in the Highlands

UK Scotland Highlands Skye and Lochalsh

PADI Medes Islands Specialty Diver

Spain Catalonia Costa Brava El Montgrí, Illes Medes i Baix Ter Natural Park

Diving & Marine Adventure in Donegal

Ireland County Donegal

Kayaking and Snorkeling with Turtles in Tenerife

Spain Canary Islands Tenerife

Scuba Dive in Massmount Reef

Ireland County Donegal Fanad Peninsula

7-Day IDEA Open Water Diver Course

Spain Galicia Rias Baixas Ria de Arousa

Marine Biologist for a Day in Azores

Portugal Azores Islands

Sailing Tour in Mundaka's Estuary

Spain Basque Country

Dive in a marine reserve in Majorca

Spain Balearic Islands Majorca

Small ship cruise to Skye & the Small Isles

UK Scotland Highlands Skye and Lochalsh

5-day Surf Course for Beginners in Deba

Spain Basque Country

Barcelona's late afternoon

Spain Catalonia Costa Barcelona Barcelona

Discover Scuba Diving in Mallorca

Spain Balearic Islands Majorca

Sea Bike Tour in Ria de Arousa

Spain Galicia Rias Baixas Ria de Arousa

Whale & Sea Bird Watching in the Basque Country

Spain Basque Country

Coastal Exploration Paddleboard Tour

UK Northern Ireland Causeway Coast & Glens Causeway Coast

Ballycastle Food Tour

UK Northern Ireland Causeway Coast & Glens Ballycastle and Rathlin