June 10, 2015

The whales have been shifting around a bit lately, and we have had some long rides over Stellwagen Bank. Each day is also different from the next, as we have watched anywhere from 1-15 whales on a single trip, including the three main species we see (minke, humpback, and fin). Many of the humpbacks that we have seen have been unfamiliar individuals, with a number of juveniles, including Flamingo’s and Mostaza’s 2014 calves. Flamingo’s calf is a whale that appears to be well-known throughout the area, as there have been multiple reports of this whale interacting with boats and their passengers. Our experience meeting him/her was no different, with the whale circling the boat, rolling and laying lazily at the surface.

My favorite sightings recently have been a mother and calf fin whale pair that we have watched a couple of times. It is uncommon to see a mom and calf fin whale pair, and we don’t know if there is a designated breeding ground for this species or where they spend their time at different times of the year. One young calf was very surface active two days- the first time we watched this pair the calf breached out of the water, and the second it lunged as it was swimming, creating a huge splash each time it surfaced.

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Active fin whale calf and its mom


Flamingo’s 2014 calf spending much of its time with us rolling at the surface


A curious young seal

In addition to the whales, we also had an amazing encounter with two young seals. These two swam right up to the boat and played along side of us with each other, but what was amazing was watching them look at the different people on the bottom deck!


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