On Thursday’s Wake up with the Whales Cruise we were delighted to parallel a couple of humpbacks who were swimming from Puako towards the Mauna Lani. These two seemed like they were enjoying the calm early morning ocean conditions, surfacing together and diving together. Of course we always maneuver our boat to stay more than 100 yards away from the whales, but at one point we were idling, waiting for them to surface and they chose to make their appearance just about 40 feet from us! After they took a look at us, they slipped below the surface and continued on their way.
We also operated our 10:00 Cruise from Anaeho’omalu Bay. On this cruise we were lucky enough to see 2 different pods of two whales. We watched the first pod cruising south (they may have been the same two whales our guests on the 8:00 cruise were watching). These two whales were basically just surfacing, taking a couple of breathes, and then diving again.. At one point one of them did a few of tail lobs (slamming his flukes against the surface of the water a several times) before diving and disappearing on us. Based on the direction they had been heading we guessed they’d continue their trip towards Kiholo basin, so we did too, and were happy to see them surface once more before we had to turn the boat back towards the bay. Just before we got there, we saw a couple of spouts from whales further offshore, but unfortunately, we didn’t have time left to go investigate.
Have a great weekend – I’ll send a recap of the weekend’s action out on Monday!
Captain Claire’s Humpback Fact of the Day: Humpback Whales received protected status from the International Whaling Commission in 1966, banning most nations from hunting them. In the U.S., the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, and the Endangered Species Act of 1973 provide additional protection to the whales. In fact, unless operating under a federal research permit, approaching humpback whales within 100 yards (300 feet) or within 1,000 feet from aircraft is prohibited by federal regulations.