Aloha, We had some interesting activities to watch on Wednesday’s Whale Watches. On our 10:00 Whale Watch we saw 6 whales. We watched a few competitive pods fighting amongst themselves. If you’re a Humpback, you don’t have claws or teeth, so the only way to “win” a fight or express dominance is to shove the other guys around (think pro-wrestling). From our viewpoint, this competition is really exciting. Five or six 60,000 – 70,000 pound whales pushing each other and slapping at each other right next to the boat is really exciting! We went out again from 12:30 to 2:30 and got to see another competitive pod. This pod had 4 whales in it, and they also were really active at the surface. We saw 4 tail lobs from them, and a couple of times we saw a pectoral slap (the pectoral fin is what would be an arm on a human). The water was so clear that we could see the outlines of the whales as they swam under the surface close to the boat. And on our Whales and Cocktails Cruise we witnessed yet another fight. This time, we stayed with a competitive pod of 4 whales and watched them battle. We saw 25 tail lobs, lots of pectoral slaps, and lots of bubble blowing (again, an aggressive maneuver for the Humpbacks). According to Captain Will, who was on all of these cruises, this was the “best day so far this season for whale watching”…and it’s only going to get better!
Captain Claire’s Humpback Whale Fact of the Day : Humpback Whales (and, in fact, all Baleen Whales) demonstrate something called “reverse sexual size dimorphism”. This means that an adult female Humpback is larger than an adult male. Though researchers are not sure of the exact reason for the difference in size, they theorize that the increased size allows the female to store more reserves to feed and care for her calf, and also to give birth to a bigger calf who might have a better chance of survival than a smaller one.