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Whale watching Akureyri

Come aboard an traditional Icelandic oak boat and travel Eyjafjörður. Experience the wildlife and weather traveling from Akureyri around one of the most beautiful fjords in Iceland.

Whale watching adventure with birds and other wildlife surely enriching the experience. We set off close to Hof, downtown Akureyri and experience the Fjord and town from a different perspective.

Eyjafjordur waters is known for being visited by various types of whales.  The most common in the the fjord nowadays are humpback whale, minki whale, harbour porpoise and some types of dolphins.

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The whales in the fjord

The HUMP BACK WHALE (Megaptera novaeangliae) in Icelandic waters is 12,5-13 m long.  The females weigh 30-48 tons and the males 25-35.  Its life expectancy is about 95 years.  The flippers are very long, usually black, or black and white on top with a white underside, and their front edge is knobby.  The back is black and the underside is light colored.  The color pattern on the neck and the breast are variable.  The baleens are dark grey.  The white and black patterns on the underside of the flukes are used as fingerprints to recognize the individuals.

The MINKE WHALE (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) seldom grows longer than 9 m in Icelandic waters.  The males weigh 5-8 tons and the females 8-10.  The baleens are light yellow and the dorsal fin is situated directly above the genitals.  It is easily recognizable by white stripes across the flippers.  Its underside is light coloured.  It occurs in all the world oceans, mainly south of 50°N in the Atlantic during winter, and migrates to the ice edge late in winter.  Its life expectancy is about 50 years.

Harbour porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) , adult males weigh about 70 kg and are less than 2 m long.  Females are equally long and weigh 55-60 kg.  Life expectancy is about 30 years.  The upper body is dark grey, the sides lighter, and the underbelly white.  Dark stripes between the small flippers and the mouth.  The dorsal fin is a low triangle.  Each jaw has 40-60 paddle-like teeth.  Diving time is usually 2-6 minutes and the whale dives down to 10-100 m for food.  Its diet is mainly fish, but also squid and krill.  Porpoises are found in shoals of 2-10, but sometimes 200-300 are seen together.  They seldom leap out of the water.

WHITE BEAKED DOLPHIN (Lagenorbynchus albirostris)
Adult males are about 3 m long and weigh 250-370 kg.  Females are 2½-3 m long and weigh 180-250 kg.  The snout is short, the dorsal fin and flippers are long and pointed. The colouring is variable between individuals, but usually the upper part of the body is dark, the belly, and the undersides of the fluke and the flippers are white.  The upper jaw is light coloured on top and each jaw contains 22-24 cone shaped teeth.  Life expectancy is 20-40 years.  The distribution area in the North Atlantic is between western Greenland, Iceland and the Barent Sea south to the state of Massachusetts and France

COMMON DOLPHIN (Delphinus delphis)
Adult males are 1,8-2,6 m long and weigh 80-140 kg.  Females are 1,7-2,3 m long and weigh 70-90 kg.  This is the smallest of the dolphin species in Icelandic waters.  Its snout is long and narrow, the dorsal fin back swept, long and pointed, and the fluke and flippers are rather small.  Each jaw contains 80-110 teeth.  The back is black, the front sides yellowish and pale green and light grey further back and the belly is white.  There are many color variations between the many and different stocks of the world oceans.  The life expectancy of this species is unknown.  The common dolphin sustains itself on a great variety of fishes, sardines, anchovies, herring etc. and squid.

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