Reports from several local residents have been coming in regarding the sighting of a small dolphin in Obidos Lagoon.
Over the past few days, at least three independent sightings have been made of what appear to be a dolphin in the inner reaches of Obidos lagoon, around the Sailing School (Escola da Velha)
On Wednesday, the area is likely to be flooded by media from National Geographic and several large newspapers plus the local papers.
Obidos lagoon is a brackish lake fed by a number of small rivers and tributaries. It is tidal and is well known for its huge variety of sea life, wildlife and also the bird population including Flamingos on their annual migration.
The Obidos lagoon is bounded by the villages of Nadadouro, Foz do Arelho and the golf resort of Bom Successo.
Dolphins are regularly to be seen near the national park of Belengas Islands (off the coast of Peniche) but is rare for them to stray close to the shore, and there has never been and reported sightings in the lagoon, until now.
Last week, very high and unusually prolonged inshore winds caused the mouth of Obidos lagoon to silt up. This has happened several times before. Normally the mouth of the lagoon is open to the sea.
It is believed that the dolphin might have been off the coast at Foz do Arelho and unable to get back to the Berlangas due to the high sea current and winds last week, and the fact it appears to be a young dolphin. It may have sought sanctuary in the calm waters of the lagoon and then got trapped when the channel silted up.
The abundance of food in the lagoon and the possibility that this young dolphin has become disorientated may be the reason that it is still in the lagoon days after the channel has been cleared.
There have been team of diggers clearing the lagoon entrance this week and Marine Conservationers will be there from Thursday 1st to assess the health of the dolphin calf and either assist it to freedom or remove it for re-habilitation, possibly at Lisbon Zoo, where there is a resident team of Dolphin specialists.
We will be watching this story closely and hope to bring you an update as we get more information. If any reader has photos or information about this please contact us.
Obidos lagoon is a very popular location for both Portugeuse and foreign visitors offering a huge expanse of calm water on the edge of the fierce Atlantic Coast and some great beaches. Foz do Arelho is a large village that is a year-round seaside resort attractive to many for its great restaurants, welcoming locals and beautiful views of the lagoon and the sea.
The Silver Coast is a large section of coast situated situated between Porto and Lisbon and is popular for non-Portugeuse who want to relocate in Portugal but not in the Algarve.
We thought it was a good story - April Fool if you believed it !