Whale Watch Log: May 9, 2016

On our 12pm trip today aboard the Asteria, we headed to where the Salacia had been in search of whales. We often see a lot of movement of prey and predators while out on the bank, and today was no exception. In just a few hours after our 10am trip, even more awesome activity moved into the area – totaling about 15-20 humpbacks, 3 fin whales, 30-60 white-sided dolphins, and many herring gulls!

Feeding frenzy

Our first initial look from a distance was a splashing kick-feeder, and as we approached it a large fin whale passed. Before even approaching the humpbacks, we suddenly started to see several scattered small splashes which turned out to be Atlantic white-sided dolphins, in a radius of about a ½ mile. 

White-sided dolphin
White-sided dolphin

While many were foraging amongst the whales, a small pod of dolphins began to mill around our boat – a few dolphin calves included! This small section of the pod seemed to be quite fond of our boat – as we slowly moved away towards the humpbacks, this group kept following us (giving us dolphin “sidekicks” for the day that hung out with us most of the trip). In-between bouts of kick and bubble net feeding humpbacks, the dolphins would continue to pop up around us.

Blackhole kick feeding
Breach kick feed

Some of our identified humpbacks today included new ID’s for the season Blackhole (see photo of her kick feeding) and Mayo. But our humpback of the day was Scylla’s 2014 calf – a juvenile who was curious to our boat swimming around us for about 10 minutes! I recognized this smaller whale by its jigsaw-like dorsal fin (see photo).

Scylla's calf

Fantastic day!

— Laura

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