Sunday, June 17, 2007

Sightings June 14, 15 and 16

A humpback whale named "Scream"
Sightings have been excellent the last couple of days with Brier Island Whale and Seabird Cruises. On June 14, the Mega Nova set out on its regular whale watch cruise and headed toward the "rip", a shallower area where the Bay of Fundy tide is upwelled by ledges creating a soup of food for whales and seabirds. It wasn't long until we spotted the first spout, the whales's breath that resembles a plume of smoke rising from the surface of the water. We were able to approach the whales so that we could get a better look at them, however, they weren't going for deep dives so we couldn't see the underside of their tail to identify them. Because of those sightings we decided to go on a research cruise the next day to get identifying photographs and data on the humpback whales that were sighted. We saw the same whales as the previous day and were able to identify them as Luna, Orion, Flame, Magpie and Parrot. Other individuals that we documented that day were Maelstrom, Scream, Willow, Waterspout, Rope and Python. We recorded 17 humpback whales so there were some that remain to be identified.
The highlight of the cruise was when Scream, Willow, and Maelstrom approached the boat closely in curious behaviour.
On June 16, the fog shut in on the Bay of Fundy but that didn't deter us from whale watching. The only factor that dos is if there is a lot of wind. We returned to the same area and were able to locate three humpback whales by shutting down the engines and listening for their breath as they surfaced. Everyone was amazed just how quickly we could locate them using this method.
All in all, it has been a good week and the best is yet to come!

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