Saturday, May 4, 2013

Today we had an amazing whale watch. We spent time with unusual species today. We went north up to Jeffreys Ledge and came across patches of copepods. These are the small tiny zooplankton (animal plankton) that right whales and sei whales feed upon. There were probably 4-5 right whales and 4-5 sei whales in the area feeding. The right whales were skim feeding, holding their head open at the surface, allowing the copepods to go in their mouth and get stuck in the baleen plates. At one point, we could see a right whale skimming in the distance, and a sei whale also skimming. The crazy thing is that their mouths are designed entirely different to both be effective at skimming like that. I would love to know how the sei whale is doing it!

IMG_3347          Sei whale feeding

eg feeding close_edited Right whale skim feeding (photo taken under permit, not today)

Here is a picture of the copepods at the surface! There were so many that the ocean looked red. The little white spots are little comb jellies!

IMG_3339

It was an awesome day!!!

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