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You Know It’s Springtime on the Water When…

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Animal Updates | Mammals | Conservation | Whale Watching

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Kera

Springtime is always an interesting time on the whale watching boats. It can be some of the most active months. For example, it’s getting to the end of gray whale season, this is a time when some humpbacks move through the area, and some of the first blue whales typically show up.

This last week has had some great whale watching! We’ve seen tons of grays, with just two days ago having seven gray whales on the day. The fin whales have been sticking around pretty much all gray whale season moving in and out of the area for short periods of time, but staying pretty consistent. To add to the list we also had a humpback whale sighting a few days ago! The humpback did some breaching in the distance and also lobtailed which is where it throws its tail out of the water.

And then there are the blue whales. Although we have not actually seen the blue whales yet, there was a report this last Saturday there were five blue whales spotted off of our waters! Our captains are on high alert and have been searching for them. Sunday also had a sighting of a blue whale very close to shore. The American Cetacean Society does an annual census monitoring primarily gray whales that pass by each winter and spring, but will record (and get excited I’m sure!) for all other whales that are spotted.

It’s hard to know if the blue whale season will be starting early this year, but this is a good sign! If the krill is looking good off of our coast, then I’m sure we’ll be seeing more blues. Last year we had some of the best sightings, so I can only hope that this year will be just as good!

In addition to the big cetaceans, the sightings of our smaller, more acrobatic whales have been just as good. We’ve had a plethora of common dolphins and even got to witness some mating behaviors! The bottlenose dolphins have been out playing too. Overall, it’s just been fantastic on the water. If you haven’t made it out, spring break is a great time to jump on the boat and see what wild life the ocean will bring!

You Know It’s Springtime on the Water When…
A humpback hangs out with the boats for a while. This one has some scars that should allow us to recognize it if we see it again!  | Molly Olaldez
You Know It’s Springtime on the Water When…
Two common dolphins come together and show mating behaviors. One dolphin is upside down under the other.  | Molly Olgadez

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