Tuesday was an interesting day for Whale Watching. On our 8:00 Wake up with the Whales Cruise, guests aboard Seasmoke saw spouts, dorsal fins, and flukes from 8 different pods each consisting of two or three whales. Guests on Manu Iwa also saw a LOT of different Humpbacks (including a few breachers about 1/3rd of a mile away). When we lowered the hydrophone during this trip, we were astounded by what we heard. Even through our untrained ears, we could discern a variety of new sounds we hadn’t heard all season.
On our 10:00 Cruise from Kawaihae, we saw the tell-tale spout of a calf early on. We motored over to check this little guy out and found him accompanied by mom and an escort. We got to watch them for about 30 minutes before seeing some other spouts — this time from a competitive pod who were definitely interacting quite a bit. After they took a dive, a totally different competitive pod surfaced on the other side of the boat. And after watching them for awhile we realized it was time to head back into the harbor. But as the saying goes, “It’s not over till it’s over”, and for the grand finale, we found ourselves accompanied by a pod of Spinner Dolphins who decided to play for awhile in our bow wake.
Captain Claire’s Humpback Fact of the Day: Since Doctors Katy and Roger Payne and their associates first analyzed their recordings of the Humpback song in 1967, we’ve learned that not only does every singer in a population sing basically the same song, but that the song continually evolves. The song is very organized, and consists of notes, phrases, and themes. No one knows the true purpose for the song, but since every population of Humpbacks sings their own song, and since they mainly sing during mating season, the song may play a role in social organization.