2014 Sightings | May 4

Today we started off slow on the NW Corner, not seeing any blows, and headed south to do a loop back towards Boston. Once we got to the western side of the bank near the new BE buoy we found some Northern gannets and several feeding humpbacks within a 5-mile radius of each other!  There were about three associated humpback pairs and some singles.

We stopped on 3 humpbacks, Glo-stick and calf with Bayou kick-feeding. Bayou was rolling at the surface through bubble clouds and Glo-stick was giving great kick-feeding demonstrations, making a very exciting whale watch. Bayou and Glo-stick were sharing their bubble clouds and the calf stayed in between them, hopefully learning their feeding techniques for next year. While these whales went underneath the water to gather more feed we were able to appreciate all the other blows and feeding whales in the area from a distance.  It was such an exciting and eventful whale watch on a beautiful May morning!

For the afternoon whale watch we headed in the direction we left Glo-stick, her calf and Bayou. We got to the mid-bank area, slightly more east than earlier this morning where we found once again several blows in the area. The seas were building with patches of rain but for the most part the weather held out.

We approached a humpback mother/calf pair and the calf was playing! The calf was tail breaching and lob-tailing, rolling and going belly up with some trumpet blows from both mom and calf. The mother looked like to be feeding when we came up to the pair and there were also some gulls and N. gannets in the area, signaling that there may be a good amount of feed nearby. Not only did we get to see the calf play around close to the boat, but the pair were also surrounded by about 20-25 North Atlantic white-sided dolphins that were taking advantage of the feed!  They were right next to the whales and were associated for quite a while.  Eventually the calf settled down and the feeding died out but the dolphins stayed in the general area for the rest of the trip.

There were 8-10 blows seen in the general area around us, most of them humpbacks but I believe there were 1to 2 finbacks in the area. It was such a great day out on Stellwagen Bank today and we got to see so many different species in such a close proximity to one another.  It was a wonderful day of whale watching!

— Laura Cupicha

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