Jul24

Can you see the joy in their eyes ...

Categories // English Channel Wildlife Officer

A library image of common dolphins

Hear more about our Wildlife Officer Maeva's amazing presenation engagment with the public.

Hello everyone!

After the rough and busy days we had last week, this week started off calmly on Wednesday. But as we say in English, it was the calm before the storm… Starting Thursday, we could clearly feel that the summer vacations was here. For each crossing, the ferry was filled with excited children, and therefore the presentations attracted a large number of families. On Friday evening for instance, 100 children were on-board. I had a group of 8th graders travelling back home for the summer, joining my usual 2pm talk on Thursday. They knew the answers to every question I asked; proof that the new generations are up to dates on a number of topics thanks to school.

Saturday was a nice day, I was giving a presentation and a 7-year old boy identified all the cetaceans I was asking about correctly and even more. I always mention fun facts such as sperm whales diving to 2,000 meters for 2 hours, and asked the audience if they knew the particular reason why the animals go so deep. “What could they possibly find at 2,000 meters deep?” is my exact question and most of the adults seem stamped. But this time, I saw the 7-years old boy’s small hand rising up and he said: “giant squid!”. I've never had such a young participant knowing the answer to this particular question without me giving any clues. I applauded him and everyone else in the lounge followed my move. You should have seen the smile on his face when the clapping started; I think that was one of my favourite moments since the beginning of the programme. He even came to see me afterwards to learn more about ORCA and our FinFriend memberships.

One fun story happened on that day; while I was meeting and informing passengers about the wildlife talk, one French man turned to me and said: “You do not need to explain what you do dearie, I already know everything that needs to be known”. Confused, I asked him if he had met me on another crossing earlier in the season, but instead he opened the French local newspaper. “Les Informations Dieppoises” published an article about the Dieppe – Newhaven programme stating my duties on-board. Many thanks to them for adverting ORCA! On Sunday, many French passengers were already seated in the lounge reserved for my talks, therefore I took the liberty of presenting in my mother-tongue. Out of the 61 people present, some British still decided to attend! It was fun!       

The number of sightings registered by crew members this week is fantastic! Ironically, they get to encounter porpoises and common dolphins every time I am not on-board, whether I am off or on the other ferry…. I am starting to think that the animals are playing hide-and-seek with me… J The Chief Officer on-board Cote d’Albatre even sent me a video during my days off of 4 common dolphins playing in front of the ferry with 2 young juveniles by their sides. Seeing this, I am willing to work all the times if it means getting sightings!

Tomorrow I am starting the first day of my last full-week… I can’t believe I am almost done! Still looking forward to meeting you on-board if you happen to be taking this crossing!

Maeva