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From Blues to Grays to Blues and Fins!

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Animal Updates | Mammals | Conservation | Whale Watching

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Julien

That’s right! We have had 3 blue whale sightings and 16 fin whale sightings on our trips between the middle of November to the present! Our spontaneous and unpredictable blue whale season has made for a very interesting, and awe filled November! Lunge feeding blues, fins and mike whales have filled our waters on recent trips. We have also had many days where the krill and even squid could be seen right at the surface of the water. We have also had an influx of dolphin activity, especially the Rissos’s, who love to eat squid. Thousands of birds and sea lions swimming in large rafts (or groups) have been seen joining in the feeding frenzies as well. We are guessing that the water has cooled off and recently brought the krill and other nutrients up from the depths for all of these large mammals to feed on.

Hopefully the blue whales haven’t gotten their fill of krill this from this summer since the waters were warmer and are going to stick around a little longer! Presently, we are still receiving reports of blue and fin whales quite frequently. We cannot predict how much longer we will have them here, but it is such a pleasant surprise. It wouldn’t be the first year that we’ve had some blue whales hanging out until the end of the year and even overlapping into gray whale season. Good thing the ocean is big enough for all of our seasonal whales!

Our most recent gray sighting was on November 28th, but it is still very early in the season. We will expect to start seeing them more frequently in December, and even more throughout the New Year. In addition to the larger whales, we’ve also had many of our trips filled with multiple dolphin sightings with some trips having sightings of over 1500 common dolphins! We have also been seeing many calves swimming alongside their mothers’ and a lot of courting behavior as well. Overall it has been quite an exciting November, and who knows what the next months will bring! So, come on out on a whale watch with the aquarium and see these magnificent creatures up close.

From Blues to Grays to Blues and Fins!
Blue whale surfacing around a patch of kirll and hundreds of birds.  | Aquarium of the Pacific Photo ID
From Blues to Grays to Blues and Fins!
Fin whale lunging toward it's next meal while bringing part of its head out of the water  | Aquarium of the Pacific Photo ID
From Blues to Grays to Blues and Fins!
Fin whale lunging for food, check out the white baleen inside of it's mouth!  | Aquarium of the Pacific Photo ID
From Blues to Grays to Blues and Fins!
Common dolphin calf swimming alongside its mother and the boat!  | Aquarium of the Pacific Photo ID

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