How does that saying go?? “When March comes in like a lion, it goes out like a lamb”…we sure hope that comes true because Monday was certainly a Lion of a day!
We only ran one cruise on the first day of March — our Wake Up with the Whales Cruise. When our guests began boarding the boat a little before 8:00 AM, it was windy, but not too windy to run a cruise safely, so we decided to give it a go.
We saw a small-ish whale just south of the bay. Based on the size of her spouts and the size of her flukes, our head naturalist Greg guessed this whale wasn’t fully grown — too big to be a calf, but too small to be an adult whale. We watched her spout 3 times before she sounded. She surfaced one more time, but then the wind picked up so we decided to turn the boat and head into it.
After heading north for a bit, we saw another small spout further up the coast and inside of us. After seeing the spout we waited and waited and waited, and after 7 minutes, this whale finally surfaced again– but this time, he was right in the direction of the sun. Captain Jason, always the considerate Captain, decided to maneuver the boat so that the next time the whale surfaced, we wouldn’t have to be staring into the sun to see him. But though once again, we waited, and waited, and waited, we never did get to see this second whale a third time.
So, even though we saw a couple of whales a couple of different times, it really wasn’t what we expect from an “Ocean-Sports-Level” Whale Watch, so we called it a “Fluke” and invited everyone aboard to join us again for FREE on another Whale Watch Adventure.
Ocean Sports Whale Fact of the Day: Throughout the season, I’ve been using the pronouns “he” and “she” almost randomly when referring to Humpbacks in these blog posts. And that’s because unless there’s a calf around, it’s pretty much impossible to identify the gender of a Humpback from our vantage point. If there is a calf, the whale closest to the baby is usually “Mom”, and any other whales joining the pod are males. So how do researchers figure it out? If you’re underneath the whale…or if the whale rolls over close to your boat and you know exactly what you’re looking for, you may be able to distinguish between the genders. A female Humpback’s genital slit is almost adjacent to her anus, separated only by a small lump called a “Hemispherical Lobe”. She also has two visible mammary grooves located on either side of her genital opening. A male Humpback’s genital slit on the other hand, is about midway between his umbilicus and anus (so, they’re much further apart than a female’s), and he lacks that “hemispherical lobe.