Saturday, October 5, 2013

Friday October 4

One trip with 4 different species means we had a "Grand Slam" kind of day! Among the multiple pods of harbor porpoise and even a few harbor seals we got the chance to see four of the most commonly seen whale species all wrapped up during one trip! To see all of this activity on a single whale watch is not normal so when it happens we like to pass along this noteworthy type of day. Conditions were spectacular for whale spotting for the ocean was almost lake-like (no wind) and the cloudy skies made spotting whale spouts stand out incredibly clearly even from miles away. All in all we saw 6 Minke whales, 2 Humpback whales, 5 Fin whales and two groups of Atlantic white-sided dolphins.

Our two Humpbacks of the day were actually spotted due to the fact that there was an enormous splash out in the distance. Turns out there was a pair of whales lobtailing! Basically the animals were smacking their tails onto the surface of the ocean over and over and over again. Once we got into the area this activity stopped and we got a chance to spend time with Valley and her calf. 

Valley and her calf

Valley's calf's tail
It had been a mother and her calf that had been creating such the ruckus on the ocean! After some nice looks at this pair we ventured further offshore to go in search of more wildlife. 
Valley swimming past the boat
Our next stop ended up being a large group of toothed-whales. We came across a pod of ~125 Atlantic white-sided dolphins! 
Atlantic white-sided dolphins gliding with such ease through the ocean (above and below)

While this group was on the move we enjoyed moving along the water with them as they swam all around us. What a fun sighting! 
With still some more time we pressed on as we cruised by a few Minke whales and had some bad luck with a few Fin whales who appeared to be holding their breath for much longer amounts of time. Eventually our patience paid off for we ended up watching a Fin whale spending only a few minutes under the water and circling around the area. It was #0718 again! Since this whale was spending so much time at the surface we were able to get some very nice looks at this whale before we needed to head for home.
Fin whale #0718
On our travels in we passed by a few more whales including Fin whale #9709, a whale that until today had only been seen by one of our whale watching friends at the start of this season, and yet another pod of 35-45 Atlantic white-sided dolphins!
Great to see you Fin whale #9709

What a wonderful day surrounded by so much wildlife. Thanks to all who joined us!
It is always such a special treat to see dolphins on a trip for we only see them about 25% of the time we are out whale watching!

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