Friday, June 30, 2017

Friday, June 30

Today's trips were filled with baleen whales! Minkes, fins and even some humpbacks were found. This morning, we spend time with 3 pairs of fin whales! One pair in particular was feeding at the surface, a relatively rare sighing behavior! Minke whales were elusive, at least until the end of the morning trip when we saw one jumping out of the water and charging around at high speeds, creating quite the splashes!

This afternoon, we found a pair of fin whales just beyond the Isles of Shoals. These two were hunting down a school of mackerel. The whales headed right for the school of fish. Bluefin tuna were also charging this school. Then the fin whales- the 2nd largest animal on the planet- lunged right through the school, mouths wide open! Amazing!! We don't see this behavior from fin whales very often, and for this to be so close to the islands was incredible!

Then we got a report of humpback whales a bit further out, on the Ledge. We saw several whales, but they were not being all that cooperative for our purposes. They'd spout once or twice, and then dive for 10 minutes. We chased a lot of blows before finally being rewarded with a breaching humpback! This was Gondolier, a humpback who has been seen off and on for the past week.

Our trip back home saw a basking shark and another fin whale as we passed the Shoals.

Whales are keeping us on our toes. We never know what we'll see from trip to trip!

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