Both of our morning Whale Watching Cruises departed from Anaeho’omalu Bay on Thursday under cloudy skies, but the winds were light, so that made for very comfortable conditions on the water and great viewing opportunities.
On our Wake up with the Whales Cruise, we got to spend some time with a lone Humpback offshore of Keawaiki (a couple miles south of the bay). This whale stayed between 100 and 150 yards from us, and did a lot of surfacing, spouting, and diving. When we deployed the hydrophone we heard some great sounds, so we know there were also some busy Humpbacks below and close by who we weren’t seeing.
Guests on our Mid-Morning Whale Watch Cruise on Manu Iwa saw spouts, dorsal fins, and flukes from 5 different Humpbacks. A couple of those whales were about 500 yards away from us, but we did get to see (and hear the spouts from) 3 of them who ventured about 100 yards from us. There’s something so cool about the sound of a Humpback exhalation…even after all these years of whale watching, it still gives us chicken-skin! Oh, and speaking about hearing the whales, when we deployed our hydrophone on this cruise, we also got to hear some very loud singing.
By the time our Pau Hana Sunset Cruise departed at 4:00 pm, the ocean conditions had changed. It wasn’t super windy, but the surface was pretty bumpy, so spotting whales was a bit challenging. Before we even saw any whales, we watched quite a few birds (most likely Shearwaters) soaring and diving. We hardly ever see birds during our cruises, so they entertained us for quite awhile. As we were heading north back towards the bay, our head naturalist Greg saw a spout about 250 yards off our port bow. Tuned out this whale was heading south, so after he showed up again, we turned the boat and paralleled him for awhile. We saw plenty of spouts (even a couple from 100 yards away), but never saw any other “whale-parts” until he lifted his flukes for a big sounding dive. Oh..and one other bird thing happened during this cruise. While we were watching our Humpback, a Brown Boobie flew alongside us about 10 feet from our port rail just about head level (for a tall person). The Boobie was definitely checking us out, staying with us as we traveled, flying away and then circling back. The ocean is certainly an amazing place!
Have a great weekend…I’ll post a recap of our weekend sightings on Monday.
Ocean Sports Whale Fact of the Day: When we say we heard LOUD singing, just how loud do we mean? Well, Humpback whales have been recorded producing sounds at around 185 decibels. Because the decibel scales use different references for sounds underwater than through the air, that’s the equivalent of about 123 decibels for us on the surface…which is as loud as the amplified music at a rock concert when you’re standing directly in front of a tower of speakers.