Whale Watch Log: July 2, 2016

Today we joined with Captain Deb on the Asteria for both the 11am and 3pm excursions, and our exploits were rewarded with jovial visitations from the youngest of our humpback whales! 

An exemplary pull breach
The first experience of the 11am trip was of an association of four whales including Tornado, Twine, and both of their boisterous calves. Twine’s 2016 Calf took haste for our vessel and declared its mighty presence with head breaches, tail breaches, and even a chin breach! During one pull breach this wondrous creature revealed a red fishing lure nestled in a ventral pleat, indicative of the hazards whales face when sharing their habitat with less conscientious species. 

Look for the lure right of the flipper
Twine's calf's chin breach
While Twine’s calf confidently frolicked away from mother’s reach, we noticed Venom’s 2016 Calf accompany the progeny of Tornado, displaying the social fluidity of the species.  This morning excursion ended with two traveling associations, one consisting of Cajun, Jabiru, Bolide, and Venom, while a second association of Flock and Bowline demonstrated their continued preference for one another!
Chin breach
Tail slap
Our 3pm return to seas south of Midbank brought us into an amphitheater  of whales new and old, and the stage was lit again by the younger generation!  While Deb granted us a close and cautious encounter with Bristle and Pele, we took note of a miniature humpback whale following in Eruption’s stead.  This inquisitive creature was soon to engage us in rolling and flipper slapping while rolling to expose the ventral flanks of its corduroy belly! 

Bristle's fluke

We re-sighted Tornado’s association with Twine and respective calves, and at one point they joined with the association of Cajun, Jabiru, Bolide, and the Venom duo!  Bonus sightings of Flock, Bowline, Othello, and 15BH123 were available to those with sharp eyes off our stern. 

Calf closeup
We ended this visceral celebration with yet another calf who encroached upon our port to prohibit any attempts of return to the terrestrial realm, and this bold creature even managed to reverse itself from the immobile Asteria with thrusts of its pectoral flippers! Calves don’t look so small when you can look down their blowholes!

— Rich