Sunday, July 7, 2013

Sunday July 7

Today's trips were all about a flat ocean, whales to watch, and a few sharks to gaze upon. This morning we saw 12 Minke whales throughout our travels. Since the ocean was so calm you could see some of these whales surface out in the distance as we spent time on Jeffreys Ledge today. We got some great looks at these baleen whales as a few of them were darting around the boat so much we constantly were shutting down since they would surface just in front of us! 
Minke on the move
We also got some fun looks at a Blue shark this morning. This particular shark didn't seem to mind us stopping to take a look at it as it continued to remain just below the surface of the ocean for a while. When sharks aren't spooked by us slowing down we love giving our passengers a chance to check out all types of marine life we may see during a trip.
Blue shark at the surface. This shark's dorsal fin is on the left and the tip of its tail can be seen on the right side of this picture.

This afternoon we were back out looking in some of the same areas where we had spent time with some of our Minke whales from the morning. We ended up getting a chance to spend time with a very cooperative Minke whale. 
A Minke whale pokes out the tip of its snout when it surfaces
This animal was very rarely diving and even kept fooling me as it would surface shortly after what I thought was a bit of a deeper dive. There was no wind offshore so the glass-like ocean surface gave us perfect conditions to watch this whale swim around.
Beautiful weather for watching whales including this very distinctly shaped dorsal fin Minke whale

We spent some very nice quality time with this whale before heading over to where some of the other Blue Ocean affiliated whale watching boats were seen earlier. We like to give whales plenty of space so we waited our turn, giving the other boats in the area time with this other species, before we made our way over. A Fin whale was swimming through the scattering of Minke whales around. Initially you might think it was Dingle since we have been seeing this whale over the past couple of days. But in fact that was not the case. Instead another very familiar whale was in the area. Comet has returned for another feeding season to Jeffreys Ledge. 
Comet swimming past the front of the boat
This is the first time Comet has been seen this year so it was quite the nice surprise to spend time with this female whale today.
Note the left and right sides of Comet's body (above and below). Those scars unfortunately came from a previous entanglement in fishing gear. Luckily Comet still survives today and only bares these scars as a reminder of the incident.
On our way home today we had one more unexpected stop. A Basking shark was at the surface. Not only had we gotten the chance to spend time with one of the second largest animals in the world (a Fin whale!) we were now watching one of the second largest sharks in the world! This shark was quite large in size and when it turned to swim right in towards the boat (twice!!) the camera did no justice to capture this shark moving just below the surface. 
This small part of a dorsal fin belongs to a much larger Basking Shark!
Incoming Basking shark. The tip of this shark's head is visible at the bottom of this photograph while the dorsal fin breaks the surface
Alas, the memories of the shark itself is probably better documented but it was definitely the best Basking shark sighting we have had so far this year.

Jeffreys Ledge never ceases to surprise us and with all our great sightings and excited passengers we all got a chance to enjoy some of the world's natural beauty today.

No comments:

Post a Comment