As we were leaving the bay on Friday’s Wake up with the Whales Cruise, we saw a Humpback breach off shore from the Hilton, so we took a “right” and headed that way.
On our way to see that whale (who, by the way, stopped breaching after that first time), we encountered not one, not two, but THREE different Mom/Calf pods, and at least one of the pods had an accompanying Escort. The location and spacing of these pods was really interesting to us as they seemed to be all lined up and ready for a parade. One Mom/Baby was at our 1:00 about 100 yards away, and as we watched them, a second pod surfaced at our 2:00 about 60 yards away. Since they were so close, we couldn’t move the boat…which turned out to be a good thing, because the third pod surfaced at our 3:00 just about 100 feet away! All the calves were spouting every 3 or 4 minutes, so we got lots of good views of the babies. We also got some great views of their Moms (especially our 3:00 Mom). Since we were just floating, we took the opportunity to deploy the hydrophone and got a chance to listen in on what all of our close-by Humpbacks were hearing.
On the way back to the bay at the end of the cruise, our breacher (remember him?) started tail lobbing. He was about 800 yards from us at that point, but we didn’t have enough time to head his way to watch the action from a closer vantage point.
Ocean Sports Whale Fact of the Day: Starting out as a way to pass time between whale sightings and hunts on the whaling ships in the mid18th century, “scrimshawing” (or the art of carving intricate designs on to whale teeth, bones and baleen) survived until the ban on commercial whaling went into effect. The etched designs were originally produced by sailors using sailing needles, and were colored with candle soot and tobacco juice to bring the designs into view. Today, hobbyists still create scrimshaw — but they use bones and tusks from non-endangered and non-protected animal species like camels, buffalo and even warthogs.