We ran back-to-back Whale Watches on Seasmoke on Thursday from Anaeho’omalu Bay, and on both cruises we spent time watching Mom/Calf/Escort pods.
During our Wake up With the Whales Cruise we had to travel a bit before we found our first Mom/Calf/Escort pod, but while we were watching them off our port side, one of our guests noticed another Mom/Calf/Escort pod off of our starboard side, and suddenly, we were the filling in a Humpback sandwich! While we were watching all 6 of these whales, we deployed our hydrophone and listened to other Humpbacks communicating in the distance.
Guests on our Mid-Morning Whale Watch Cruise got to see a very active calf. This little guy breached frequently in bursts of 5 or 6 breaches before calming down for awhile, and then amping up and doing it again. Over the course of the cruise, we must have seen 30 breaches from him. As we watched, he, his Mom, and the escort kept surfacing closer and closer to our idling boat, finally surfacing just 10 feet off our bow with an explosion of exhalations. After that, we decided that we were all a bit spoiled for close encounters, so we made our way back to the bay.
Ocean Sports Whale Fact of the Day: So, were those whales who surfaced right in front of our boat looking at us? And if so, what did they see? Though Humpbacks rely on their sense of hearing far more than any other sense, we do know that vision is also important to them. Based on the shape of the Humpbacks’ corneas, they can certainly see us…but, they’re probably a bit farsighted when looking through water and a bit nearsighted when looking through the air. And in case anyone asks you, Humpbacks have beautiful brown eyes. Their eyeballs weigh, on average, 2.16 pounds (as a comparison, human eyeballs weigh about a quarter of an ounce).