We finally got to say “aloha” to the wind this morning – we experienced not a breath of wind on our Breakfast with the Whales Cruise, which made for some great whale sightings. We must have seen close to 30 different Humpbacks. We had 4 different close encounters with different pods of whales, saw 5 breaches (though those were further away) and also witnessed a couple of tail lobs and a couple of pectoral slaps. And because the wind died down, we were finally able to deploy the hydrophone, hearing some great clear singing. What a great way to start the day! On the 10:00 Whale Watch, we saw 25 whales, including two pods of Cow/Calf/Escort. The first of those two pods came right over to the boat and we all got to see Mom balancing her baby on her rostrum, and the baby rolling over and slapping the water with his little pec fins. We went out again from Kawaihae at 12:30, and this time we saw 30 different whales including a pod of Mom/Baby/Escort close by. The escort must have breached 30 times! And then we saw another pod of Mom/Baby breaching in the distance – Mom would breach, followed by the calf breaching. Mom breached 3 times and the calf breached twice. And we finished the day on the Whales and Cocktails cruise, where once again, everywhere we looked we saw whales. We found a Mom/Baby/Escort pod right off the bat, and they seemed curious enough about us to approach us. We saw lots of breaching and when we deployed the hydrophone, we heard some very clear singing. All in all, it was a great day on the water.
Mahalo, and have a wonderful weekend. I’ll send out the next report on Monday!
Captain Claire’s Humpback Whale Fact of the Day: A Humpback Whale doesn’t reach sexual maturity till it’s about 35 feet long (age 5 or 6 for females, and a little bit later for males). Researchers believe that most Humpbacks in the North Pacific don’t begin calving successfully till they’re at least 10 years old – the mean average is 11.8 years.