We ran two different 8:00 Wake up with the Whales Cruises on Tuesday. Both boats report seeing 10 12 different Humpbacks, and both boats report that the whales were pretty quiet. Guests aboard Seasmoke were accompanied for over an hour by one lone mid-size (sub-adult) Humpback. This guy was surfacing every 5-7 minutes clearly looking at us. We all got good looks at his the bumps on his spine from his vertebrae, and we even got to look down his blowholes! Guests on Manu Iwa experienced a close-encounter too…this one was from an adult Humpback.
Highlights from our 10:00 Whale Watch included Mom and baby breaching…was Mom teaching baby how to do it, or just caught up in the fun? I’ve attached some video of the event courtesy of our crew extraordinaire, Jason.
Mahalo and enjoy the last day of 2014. I’ll check in again next year!
Captain Claire’s Humpback Fact of the Day: This fact was corrected in our post dated 1/9/2015. Here’s the correct information: Back on New Year’s Eve, I posted a fact about Humpback Whale vertebrae. One of my sources reported that of the 52-54 vertebrae found in a Humpback’s spine, 10 are fused to form the sacrum. Our favorite researcher Chris Gabriele (from the Hawaii Marine Mammal Consortium), who had recently been involved in a project putting a Humpback skeleton together contacted me to say that she didn’t see any fused bones. So she contacted bone articulation expert, Dan DenDanto at Whales and Nails who confirmed her observation. He said that it was rare for any balaenopterid whales to have fused bones except in the cervical region (their necks)…and occasionally at the site of an injury.