Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Last Year's Calves are Returning!

Teather's 08 calf

Haze's 08 calf

Peedee's 08 calf

Hello Everyone and thanks for checking in! As the season slows down, we have a the opportunity to sift through our photographs and try to match the unknowns with the North Atlantic Humpback Whale Catalogue. During the month of September we conducted some research cruises in which we photographs some very young whales in the Bay of Fundy and we are gradually finding out who they are. Last season, we saw a total of 23 calves return with their mothers to the Bay of Fundy to learn how to feed on the abundance of herring and krill that can be found here. The mothers always bring their calves back to the same area that they were brought to as calves and so these feeding ares are passed on from generation to generation. So far, we have documented three of those so far with many more photos yet to be matched. The ones that have returned are calves of; Teather, Peedee and Haze.

Other new whales this year are: Godzilla, Egret (Siphon's 07 calf) and Cord (Bungee's 02 calf)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Perfect day!


Fin Whales at the Bulkhead Rip.

Hello everyone!

We decided to take advantage of the great weather and conducted a full day research cruise. We left bright and early and headed across the Bay to an area called the Bulkhead Rip whics is not far from Grand Manan Island. We had been getting reports of humpback whales and fin whales and we went to investifgate to see if any of "our" whales had gone over there. Once we arrived it wasn't long until we started to see spouts in the distance. Most of them were fin whales and we counted over forty at that area. We did see three humpbacks and was able to identify one as Bottleneck.
The other two were unknown an need to be matched to the North Atlantic Humpback Whale Catalog. A North Atlantic Right Whale was sighted as well.

North Atlantic Right Whale

We left that area and headed back across to another area where smaller humpbacks were being sighted. We counted over 20 of that species there. Only one of those were known and it was Viper, a whale we haven't sighted here since 2007. We continued toward Northwest Ledge off Brier Island and more humpbacks were there including; Lace, Haze, Lacuna, Flame, Squiggle and calf, Foggy and Highlighter.

All in all, it was a very productive day!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Another good day on the water!

Hi everyone! The Bay of Fundy continues to abound with sightings of whales and seabirds. On today's cruise we saw three humpback whales that were identified as Orion, Froth and Teather. Orion and Teather were very active, flipper slapping, tail lobbing and Orion even approached the boat at one point!

Orion flipper slapping

On September 12th, our cruise watched a minke whale continuously breach by the boat for half an hour.

New whales to the Bay of Fundy have been: Sigma, Lace and Orion.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

What a week!

One of the unidentified juveniles sighted on a research cruise.

Squiggle's calf plays around the Mega Nova

Sperm whale spout is at an angle due to the single
blow hole being directed to the left

Hi everyone! Summer has seemed to arrived ......well, summer weather. But actually, the weather plays no role in the whale watching. We have had some pretty good trips even in inclement weather.
But that's beside the point. This past week has been amazing with different humpback whales being sighted everyday! We never know who might show up. Or what species! We conducted a short research cruise yesterday in the afternoon. We spent some time photographing some whales such as Touchdown, Bungee, Kalimba, Froth, Squiggle and calf, Teather, and Gremlin. We thought we may try to go further offshore. We spotted a single whale and approached it, hoping to obtain some photos but it disappeared as soon as we got there. We waited 25 minutes for it to reappear and it did about a mile to the southwest! Then we noticed the spout, it was low and angled to the left. We approached and got a photo from a distance just in case it disappeared again...and it did for 18 minutes and when it surfaced it was too far for us to work with but we could definitely identify it as a sperm whale. We haven't seen that species here since 2001! It was certainly a nice surprise!
On September 4th, we took advantage of the weather and went to an area where some younger humpbacks have been hanging out. In that area we photographed 17 different juvenile humpbacks and were only able to identify three of them. They were Clutter, Magma, and Shot Put.
Some other new individuals sighted have been: Meteor, Slumber, and Egreque.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Do the "Right" Thing!

On August 31st, we had the priveledge of witnessing the rarest large whale on earth engaged in Surface Active Group behaviour. There were 12 - 15 right whales but only one of those was a female. She calls the males and rolls on her back, making herself unavailable to the males who are jostling for position. Imagine up to 14 males at about 50 tonnes each competing for that. It dos indeed cause quite a stir!