Night and Day
December 23, 2023
Our 2 Whale Watch Cruises on Friday were like night and day.
Guests on our Wake up with the Whales Cruise from Anaeho’omalu Bay saw a couple of spouts from various Humpbacks, but none of the spouts were close, and we weren’t able to get to any of the spouters before they disappeared, so though we saw evidence of Humpbacks, it wasn’t good enough for us. We called that trip a Fluke — and invited everyone aboard to join us again on another Whale Watch Cruise for no charge.
We reboarded and headed out for our Late Morning Whale Watch Cruise an hour after returning from that first cruise with kind of low expectations. But as disappointing as that first cruise was, the second cruise was just the opposite. During this trip, the Humpbacks found us and we had two great close encounters with a Humpback who wanted to investigate the boat. After the first close encounter, we turned off the engines and let the wind push us parallel to the whale. While the engines were off, we deployed our hydrophone and the sounds we heard were so loud that we knew “our” Humpback had to be the singer. We were proven correct, when he surfaced again and while he was spouting, we didn’t hear any singing. Interestingly, in between breaths, while our whale was still on the surface, the hydrophone picked up the singing again — which meant this whale was singing while he was on the surface too!
Ocean Sports Whale Fact of the Day: All whales, regardless of species, age, or gender make noises. Only Humpback whales sing an organized song…and only male Humpbacks sing. We used to believe that the males only “sing” when they are in the warmer waters where they mate. Now that we’re listening more closely, we have heard the males singing a bit in their colder feeding waters (mostly at the end of feeding season prior to the beginning of the migration). So, is the male Humpback singing a mating song? Researchers have observed that female whales will not approach a singing male, so if the males are singing to bring the females closer to them, it seems to be pretty ineffective.