Log for April 2, 2015

Today we had a fantastic day out in the sanctuary aboard the Asteria! It was the first really good weather day for myself this season, so I was excited to get out towards the bank finally. We headed to yesterday’s location of whale sightings (a bit south of the NW corner), to find scattered activity of about 8-10 whales – which included humpbacks, minkes, and fins!

After spotting pairs of blows in the distance of fins and humpbacks, we first stopped upon a scattered group of 10-15 Atlantic White-Sided dolphins. A few of these guys even swam up near our boat! (see photo). While with the dolphins, we spotted two groups of humpbacks, and also a grey seal in the distance (we had excellent visibility today!). We decided to spend time with a group of three humpbacks, who luckily for us were staying in the area today!

Our group of three (and first ID’s of the season!) consisted of Tumbleweed, Mend, and Homerun (see photos of their flukes). At first this trio was taking long shallow dives and not fluking, but eventually on our last looks we were able to get clear looks of their tails to identify them (and we had lots of helpful passengers in matching today!). We had beautiful looks of the trio traveling alongside our boat, and the unknown of the group even spent some time swimming under us at depth, and surprised with a close surfacing! (see photo). 

We also counted at least 3 minke whales today, one of which swam near our boat giving us some nice looks (see photo).

Overall it was a wonderful spring trip, and refreshing to see more activity out there! In addition to the five marine mammal species we saw (humpback, minke, fin, white-sided dolphins, and grey seal), we also spotted common eiders, northern gannets, and Canada geese. A wonderful day!

Happy spring!

Laura Howes

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