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Weekend Fun + A Video

February 19, 2024


Saturday’s Mid-Morning Whale Watch Cruise started off kind of slow but ended with a bang. It took us about 20 minutes before we saw any Humpbacks, but the wait was worth it when all of a sudden 3 different Humpback pairs surfaced. We made our way over to a Mom/Calf pod who seemed to find us as interesting as we found them. Though we did our best to stay our required 100 yards from them, they surprised us by surfacing within 50 yards of us several times. In between sightings, we deployed our hydrophone and listened in on several Humpbacks. Just when we thought we should begin heading back to the harbor, our calf got excited. We watched him pec slap and tail lob a whole bunch of times, and he full-on breached 5 times all about 100 yards from the boat.

Guests on Sunday’s Mid-Morning Whale Watch Cruise saw a few small groupings of Humpbacks dispersed around 3 miles off shore. All of these whales were spending considerable time underwater, surfacing only to take a few breaths before diving again. While underwater they were swimming quite a bit — we knew that because several times we were surprised when the whales we had seen dive from 100 yards away surfaced quite close to us. At the end of the cruise we got to watch two Humpbacks get excited. We got to see a breach, followed by several head lunges. Oh…and when we deployed the hydrophone, we head a lot of different Humpback voices.



Ocean Sports Whale Fact of the Day:  All mammals have hair. Humpback Whales are mammals… so where is their hair? Humpbacks have rows of bumps on their chins that we call “tubercles”. Out of each one, sticks a hair that’s about 1/2 inch long that we call a “vibrissa”. Because there’s a nerve ending underneath each hair, and blood flow to the nerve, we know the whales use these hairs to sense something…but we’re not sure what they’re sensing. Quite likely, they use their hairs like cats use their whiskers – for proprioception…or perhaps these hairs work in a coordinated fashion with sensory organs in their chins helping the whales to know when to open and close their mouths around schools of prey.