15 Apr 2018

15 Apr 18 - Atlantic Odyssey - Day Seventeen: At Sea From Tristan Da Cunha To St Helena - Flying Squid

Throughout the day, I had been able to take photographs of some of the 500 plus Small Clearwing Flying Fish that I had seen. However, at one point, a group of what I assumed to be Flying Fish took off & glided away from the starboard side. I didn't try to look at them with the binoculars, but just lifted the camera to get some photos (there was never time to do both). I am really glad I did as they were actually Flying Squid. When they took off I could see with my naked eyes a long pale streamer that appeared to be several times their length. This had confused me as the other Flying Fish hadn't shown this streamer. I was even more confused when I saw the photos, as there was no pale streamer. But at least it was clear in my shots that I had photographed some Flying Squid. This was quickly explained by Marijke as Flying Squid propel themselves out of the water using a jet of water & the pale streamer that I had seen was the water jet. By the time, I had got the camera onto them, they had already run out of water. This did prove to be the best way to identify Flying Squid when I saw another party a couple of days later. There were a few other sightings on the Odyssey, but only a handful.
Flying Squid: They looked to be a bit over a foot long. They propel themselves with a jet water and fly tail first out of the sea. They went 15 - 20 metres before re-entering the water. They couldn't do multiple glides as the larger Flying Fish could, as they had already run out of water in the first glide
Flying Squid: There is more than one species of Flying Squid so it is probably not possible to identify them to a species. However, they was another example of the fascinating & photogenic sealife we saw
Flying Squid: Four of the 25 individuals in this party

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