Wednesday, June 19, 2019

June 17-19, 2019

On Monday morning the weather was pristine. At times there was not a breath of air. We saw three fin whales, six minke whales and a few seals.
Minke whale
The fin whales were that much more impressive to watch slipping through the water with barely a disturbance at the surface.
Fin whale in perfect ocean conditions
Fin whale diving
It was even lunchtime for a grey seal!
Grey seal roaming by with a mid-day snack (above and below)

On Monday afternoon, we saw three fin whales again but all three were different from our morning ones! A pair of fin whales were on the move and it did not take long to identify one of those whales as Comet!
Additionally, a humpback whale made an appearance followed by another fin whale on our travels home.
Humpback whale (above and below)
Fin whale
On Tuesday, the wind was minimal again. On our morning trip, even with having to skirt around some fog, we saw five fin whales and four minke whales. Our first sighting was only a few miles offshore and included a pair of fin whales. Ocean conditions were just beautiful for whale watching.
Fin whale off the coast of New Hampshire
Fin whale
During the afternoon, the fog held back and marine life popped up everywhere! We started with a RARE sighting of a white-beaked dolphin. What a way to start a trip.
White-beaked dolphin dorsal fin
Offshore we saw two fin whales, at least 10 minke whales, an elusive humpback whale, blue fin tuna, a large basking shark and a grey seal busy having an afternoon snack!
Minke whale
Fin whale
Basking shark with its mouth open!
Grey seal and its cod fish. The gulls were in hot pursuit!
Wednesday brought its own surprises. BIRD ALERT: We had our first shearwaters of the season. Two great shearwaters were spotted this morning. We were in varying degrees of fog all day sometimes thick-thick, sometimes disappearing all together. Of course fog doesn't stop us from searching from the moment we leave the dock until the moment we return! On our morning trip we saw six minke whales, a fin whale and a brief glimpse of a basking shark.
Minke whale

Fin whale
At one point our fin whale swam directly past the boat and our passengers got an incredible look at the sleekness and massive size of these creatures. This afternoon, we saw two minke whales and a fin whale.
Fin whale
The fin whale was doing some traveling but it was one of our minke whales that stole the show. Out of nowhere one breached right next to the boat! And thanks to our Blue Ocean Society summer interns, Erin and Hannah, we know this minke whale breached 10 more times!!
Breaching minke whale
The end, and aftermath, of a minke breach (above and below)!
But the action wasn't over yet. After all the repeated aerial activity, and charging through the water, this whale became extremely curious. Our minke whale swam circles around us, checking out every angle of us, whether right side up, on its side, or upside down! What an incredible experience.
One of the many laps this minke did around the boat. This whale is in the process of rolling upside down as it swims right under the boat! Please note, our engines were off the entire time this minke whale swam donuts around us.