Sunday, May 25, 2014

Sunday May 25

We were lucky enough to watch Fin whales on Jeffreys Ledge again today. On our way out we saw a Minke whale so close to home it was even before we passed by the Isles of Shoals (which are about 6 miles offshore). Once we got to the Ledge we saw spouts in a few different directions and didn't know where to begin. After a few minutes orientating ourselves to the number of whales in the area (at least 5!) we began to ease our way over to a few animals to check them out.
One of the first Fin whale seen darting around the area today
We always make sure to maneuver alongside any whale's movement for it is us humans who are the visitors to the watery world of these marine mammals and thus want to make sure we not to disrupt any whale's natural movements. At first some of our Fin whales were bouncing all around but soon a few began to stay put. So much so we got a chance to watch two different Fin whales catch a few quick naps! Suddenly the whale would remain just below the surface of the ocean, barely propelling itself forward, leading to showcase a unique behavior known as logging or sleeping! With such a large whale hovering so close to the surface we were able to get some awesome looks at a 60+ft Fin whale!
A Fin whale about to get a breath of air. Note the light linear/triangular patch almost in the center of this photo just barely subsurface. That weird coloration is actually the flipper of this Fin whale!
Two different whales (thanks to looking closely at their dorsal fins and realizing it was two different whales we came across snoozing today!) gave us some great views before we moved along to a few of the other spouts in the area.
One of our Fin whales after awakening from a quick afternoon nap as it is off on dive into the depths of the ocean
Before long we recognized one of the whales circling around. It was Bolshoi! Having seen this whale yesterday for the first time in 5 years on Jeffreys Ledge it was great to know this whale is still around utilizing the area.
A close-up look at Bolshoi's dorsal fin. Just one of the many features researchers use to identify this particular Fin whale from others.
Who knows how long this whale will stick around, or for that matter any of the whales we saw today, but what a nice day with some great looks at some of the second largest animals in the world!

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