Posts Tagged ‘Humpback Whale’

I have to admit, during our off season I do not check this blog very often. When the whales are gone, apparently, so am I! However, I have received a few comments recently which had reinvigorated me, and reinforced how very lucky I, along with my coleagues are, that we get to enjoy these animals when they migrate to our home.

At the moment, I am giddy for them to arrive. The first sighting has already occurred, about 2 weeks ago off of Kauai, but that does not mean I am any less excited for the first time I see my returning buddies!

After reading these recent comments, and reviewing the most recent footage, I remembered how special of an experience it is to look a whale in the eye. I recall once watching a very informative Hannah Bernard video (filmed in the early 80’s, clearly) which mentioned “looking into the eye of a whale is like looking into the eye of God.” Not being a very religious person, I didn’t connect with that too much at the time. Now, after having this experience several times for myself, I can truthfully say, it is unreal. In a single moment, a person can be humbled beyond any expectation of a humbled human life. To look a creature in the eye that is not only so large, but is also so old… is nothing short of magical. Even for the most non-beleiving among us, it would be hard to classify such an experience as anything less than spiritual.

For me, I realized in a very quick, very minute moment, that no matter how much science we have in our favor, we will never understand the world in which they live. We will never know what they know about our own planet. We will never see what they have seen. They live in a very close, yet a very alien world to us. I will forever consider them as inspirational, enduring, and incredibly wise creatures. I hope that the importance I place on these monumental examples of life that is sustained in our oceans will intrigue others, just enough, to make changes in their own lives to help this eco system prosper.

This, is my hope for our collective future.


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I am not the only person that has caught whale fever this season (although I can’t deny I probably have a stronger strain than most!) Some of my other co-workers have started getting excited about our winter friends. Here is a video that Bailey shot while working recently. Enjoy!

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On Monday we went out on the 7:30 AM run and within moments of leaving Lahaina harbor, saw the first spout about 350 yards off.  As we headed over, there were no other real signs that whales were in the area.  As we waited out the down time, (humpbacks stay under for predictable periods with every dive) finally two adults and a calf surfaced.  Based on the behaviors the calf was displaying we know that he was no more than one week old.

The calf was playing around, twirling in the water, staying towards the surface to breathe but never doing any specific communication maneuvers.  There were no tail throws, no pectoral fins slapping, these are signs that the babies muscles are more developed and slightly older, this was not the case for our calf.  He was however very playful and quite surface active considering his limited motor skills.

This group staying with us throughout the cruise and put on a great show despite the fact that the season hasn’t officially begin!


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