Our Wednesday Whale Watches were really fun. On our Wake up with the Whales Cruise on Manu Iwa, we got to see 4 double breaches — we’re never really sure how whales can time that so perfectly and it’s astounding to see. Our idling boat was also approached by a couple of big adults who decided to take a good look at our hulls, diving just below us.
The water was so calm and flat that we could almost count the tubercles on their pectoral fins as they swam underneath. And our 10:00 Whale Watch on Alala was just magical. Shortly after we left the harbor, we found a Mom with her baby and an escort. According to our on-board naturalist Donna, guests could clearly see baby resting on Mom’s rostrum (her head). They stayed that way for a very long time, until baby rolled away. Then, Donna reported seeing some splashing further down the coast so Captain Kino cruised over to see what was going on.
There were 3 adult humpbacks on the surface just rolling around. It wasn’t aggressive… they were showing their flukes, their bellies, and their pec fins. They kept rolling around each other getting closer and closer to our idling boat. Then they decided to dive underneath us, but even then they stayed close enough to the surface for us to see them. After passing underneath us, we had to head back to the harbor where we saw our Mom, baby and escort again… this time accompanied by a pod of Spinner Dolphins! And on our Whales and Cocktails Cruise, Captain Kealohi reports that guests saw about two dozen different whales… lots of Mom/Baby pods (most accompanied by escorts), and 4 different competitive pods.
Captain Claire’s Humpback Fact of the Day: Researchers have observed that female Humpbacks don’t associate with each other at all while they’re in Hawaii. This is especially interesting in light of the fact that the females do associate with each other in Alaska — they’ll even feed cooperatively there. Since the females come here just to mate (and calve), we can postulate that female-female interaction must somehow get in the way of successful mating. Maybe groups of females would attract too many competitive males for safe mating to occur… what do you think?