Our Monday morning Wake Up with the Whales guests were greeted with some pretty strong winds and resulting choppy seas. But…all that ocean energy seemed to excite the Humpbacks.
As we made our way north out of the bay, we saw some splashing near the Mauna Lani Resort. It turned out that the splashing was caused by a breaching lone small(ish) whale. We watched him breach a couple of times before he tired out and dove under the surface. We waited around and were delighted when our Humpback surfaced again. This second time, he didn’t breach, but we got to see him spout a few times before diving. Of course we were hoping for some more breaching, so we waited for him to surface a third time, but while he did decide to come up for a breath or two in the same area, he didn’t breach again. However, when he decided to dive this last time, he lifted his flukes high into the air and a lot of us got some good pictures of his tail.
After he disappeared, a couple of us saw some spouts further out to sea, so Captain Sam turned the boat and we headed out to see who was there. This time we got to see two whales. Based on their relative sizes, we were guessing we were watching Mom Humpback with her yearling (see today’s Fact of the Day for more about this). We watched the two of them surface and spout again…but it was too windy and choppy for us to wait in the area for them to surface a third time and we were running out of time anyway, so we headed back to the bay.
Ocean Sports Whale Fact of the Day: According to observations made by Humpback researchers in Hawaii, the first whales to arrive in Hawaii each year from Alaska are females with a yearling (who they may abandon upon arrival to the islands), followed by sub-adults (usually males) — the teenagers of the whale world. The next arrivals are adults who are looking for mates, and the last to arrive are pregnant females. We’re not sure if it’s coincidental, but our first sightings this year seem to be following this trend.