Lillian Harstoy, an underwater photographer and videographer, spotted a school of bottlenose dolphins off the Basque Coast on April 25, in the Gouf de Capbreton. Passionate about diving, this native Bayonne has just published a book that reveals the astounding richness of this 4,500m deep underwater canyon.
The scene was filmed only 7 kilometers from the Basque coast, in an area where the ocean is still turbulent with strewn waters. Below the surface is the stunning underwater canyon, the Gouf de Capbreton.
Lillian Harstoy, an underwater photographer and videographer from Bayonne, spotted a group of bottlenose dolphins there.
Unlike common dolphins that usually swim at sea, these species called Tursiops feed near the coast. These dolphins find big fish there (mackerel, mullet, etc.) that they love.
A meeting that you must know how to provoke, without prejudice to the life of the animalExplains Lillian, who has been observing marine animals for more than 20 years in the world.
In particular, he discovered a mother and her child that day, not far from each other.
Video length: 40 seconds
Bottlenose dolphins off the Basque Country in Jouf de Capriton
© France TV
They chant under the boat, resonate and make them love!
Video length: 41 seconds
© France TV
Lillian had been observing the species living there or passing through this area for years. Among them, therefore, dolphins, but also bluefin tuna, killer whales, sperm whales, whales, jellyfish … There are also subtropical species at the end of summer and penguins in winter. And on the surface, there are also many migratory birds.
From these meetings and after five years of work, Lillian Harstoy has just published Baie de Biscaye – Les Trésors du Gouf de Capbreton, a book of photographs and anecdotes that reveal the fortunes of Gouf de Capbreton.
To make these images, I always look for special behaviors and situations but without disturbing the animals.
The Gouf de Capbreton, where Lilian observes many species, is a giant underwater ravine. This is amazing A geological phenomenon of rare biodiversity Diving to a depth of 4500 meters in depth Winding slopes, plateaus and cliffs.
It was formed about 30 million years ago in the extension of the Pyrenees fault. Its proximity to the coast is exceptional: the valley actually begins a few hundred meters from Capbreton (in the Landes) before continuing its journey for about 300 kilometers.
In this valley, hot and cold water mix, thus attracting plankton. It is a veritable storeroom for large fish and marine mammals.
So the exceptional biodiversity of Gouf de Capbreton makes Lillian Harstoy happy, but also for professional fishermen who catch a huge number of rockfish or deep sea fish there.
These beautiful photos of bottlenose dolphins shouldn’t make us forget that small cetaceans are in danger. National Delinquency Network reporters have identified 400 leads On the Atlantic coast between January and February 2022.
The common dolphin accounts for approximately 90% of these strands.
The dead animals, which scientists from the PELAGIS network were able to examine, bore clear signs that they had fallen into hunting gear.
For Vincent Rideau, professor of marine mammal biology at the PELAGIS observatory, the mortality rate in fishing gear has been a black spot for several decades, especially in our region.
The mortality rate in fishing gear is up to 90% of dolphins stuck on our shores. This is important!Vincent Redaux, Pelages Observatory
“Regional Surveys on France 3” magazine April 2022
If marine species are at risk, so are vertebrates.
In less than 50 years, two-thirds of the planet’s wild species have disappeared, alerts the WWF.