Blue Ocean Society's Whale Sightings

Greetings! Thanks for visiting our blog. Our staff and interns will be posting their experiences here working on whale watch boats in NH and MA.

Monday, October 10, 2011

October 9- Prince of Whales

What a fantastic final weekend of our whale watching season! On Friday, we were treated to a few looks at critically endangered right whales, and a few fin whales. Saturday brought us an enormous number of Atlantic white sided dolphins and more fin whales, and Sunday, to top it off, we found several fin whales including #9618, dozens of harbor porpoises, leaping bluefin tuna everywhere, and a mother humpback whale with her calf!

Fin whale #9618, first documented in 1984 on Stellwagen Bank and later documented on Jeffreys Ledge in 1996, has been seen several times earlier this summer- in July and August.
Fin whale #9618
A second very large fin whale was seen nearby. This one I thought could be #9709 but upon closer inspection, it is not...likely this whale is a new animal to our catalog!
New fin whale surfacing
Check out the beautiful chevron on this whale- very unique and distinctive!

Fin whale chevron marking
Seemingly everywhere throughout the trip today were harbor porpoises and bluefin tuna jumping around. We saw at least 4 different groups of porpoises, but no sightings of the white one we had seen last week.
Bluefin tuna
As we spotted a couple more blows from fin whales, our friends on the Granite State radioed to inform us of a pair of whales heading our way. After a bit of searching, our special guests Cynthia and John spotted the blows and back of a whale about a mile away. This was a mother/calf pair of humpback whales and even more exciting for us since we hadn't seen any humpbacks since late August!

The calf appeared to be nursing, something it won't be doing much longer as it is nearing weaning time (the calf was likely born in the Caribbean in Dec-January of this past winter). Both the mom, who we later identified as Solo, and her calf were lifting their flukes as they went down on a deep dive together. Absolutely beautiful!

Humpback whales, Solo and her calf

Thanks to everyone on board today for making this such a special trip for us all, and thanks to all of the Prince of Whales passengers this season for your continued support! We look forward to seeing you back on the water next spring!

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Jelly Doughnut said...

Can't believe it is over!! I should've wrote more post-it notes! May 2012 is SO FAR AWAY!

Jelly Doughnut said...

The POW looks so big out of the water! I wish I looked big out of the water!