On Wednesday, due to the high winds in Waikoloa we ran both of our Whale Watch Cruises from Kawaihae (where the mountain acted as a shield, giving us a lee). On the Wake up with the Whales Cruise, we got to see 6 different whales, but one of them was acting quite peculiarly. He (or she) spent 45 minutes lying on his back on the surface with his flukes and pectoral fins sticking out of the water. He may have been sleeping…or maybe just enjoying the calm surface. We also got to deploy our hydrophone and heard lots of clear singing.
On the 10:00 Cruise, we saw spouts from 6 different whales, but none of them did more than surface, spout and dive. That wasn’t the kind of experience we want our guests to enjoy, so Captain Will called that trip a “Fluke” and we invited everyone aboard to join us again on another Whale Watch Cruise for FREE!
Captain Claire’s Humpback Fact of the Day: According to researchers, the sleep process for a Humpback is most likely very similar to how their little toothed cousins, the dolphins, sleep. EEG readings from sleeping bottlenose dolphins show that the dolphins shut down half their brains at a time to rest – a process called “uni-hemispheric slow wave sleep”. Mallard ducks and some species of seals sleep this way too. The active half of the brain presumably is monitoring breathing and perhaps scanning the surroundings for predators, while the passive half is resting. Dolphins sleep approximately 33% of the day, but stay asleep for only a couple of hours at a time.