Log for August 13, 2015

Today we were very lucky to have such a beautiful day out on the bank! Collaborating with other boats in the area, we decided to head towards the middle of Stellwagen Bank with the goal of moving towards the eastern edge and heading south.  

Firefly and calf — up close and personal

Once we arrived at the western edge of the bank near the shipping lane we were floored to have found Firefly and her calf! Firefly is a personal new sighting this season and I was thrilled to see her again. She has been a staple to the Gulf of Maine humpback whale population and has proudly brought calves to this area during previous seasons.  

Baby breach

Luckily, her calf was breaching over and over right next to our boat!  It was such a calm bright day on the water and the calf had a very relaxed breaching style, making it such a fun summer day!  It is always fun to observe these behaviors and theorize why they are breaching the way they do.  

Summer on Stellwagen

Sometimes we can make an educated guess that they are communicating with other whales in the area, or maybe expressing a dominant behavior. This calf seemed so laid-back and really looked like he/she was just enjoying the morning like the rest of us.  

One fun-loving calf?

Other than breaching, we were excited to see lobtailing from the calf, as well as some rolling, flipper slapping, and spy hopping! We were in the company of the Miss Cape Ann, Hurricane II, and Privateer IV.  Thanks to Captain Jim we were able to have a bright, sunny, refreshing day out on Stellwagen with Firefly and her energetic calf.

— Laura Cupicha

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