September 13, 2015

We have had a busy summer and the sightings have been awesome. We have watched a variety of animals, including the three most common species we see- minke whales, fin whales, and lots of humpbacks! We have also been very, very lucky with lots of surface behavior. We never know when the whales might breach, roll over, or interact with the boat, and we enjoy it every single time. We had one awesome interaction with a juvenile who spent over an hour checking out the boat- rolling over, spyhopping, and looking right at us.

We have also been seeing a few whales who, unfortunately have come into some back luck. We watched Mogul, a 29 year old whale for about two weeks on Stellwagen before he moved on to Jeffrey’s Ledge. The next time we saw him a few weeks later, he had a small propeller scar across his back. Owl is another whale who has a mysterious injury on her left dorsal and flank. There have also been a number of reports of entangled whales. Hopefully these animals will be able to make full recoveries.

In addition to whales, we have also been lucky enough to see not one but two sea turtles- a loggerhead on southern Stellwagen and a leatherback on Jeffrey’s. We have also had a number of sea birds throughout our trips, including shearwaters, Wilson’s storm petrels, and northern gannets.

 

Northern gannet

Northern gannet

DSC_0575

One day we found at least 5 ocean sunfish- we eventually kept driving when we saw a fin so that we could reach the whales!

Greater shearwater

Greater shearwater

Mostaza and Venom

Mostaza and Venom

Owl's injuries from a ship strike

Owl’s injuries from a ship strike

We have had a couple of great trips with Atlantic white sided dolphins

We have had a couple of great trips with Atlantic white sided dolphins

Etch-a-Sketch and another humpback made a close enough passing to see the barnacles up close

Etch-a-Sketch and another humpback made a close enough passing to see the barnacles up close

One of our favorite days was spent with a young humpback (possibly Nile's 2014 calf), who spent over an hour engaging with the boat

One of our favorite days was spent with a young humpback (possibly Nile’s 2014 calf), who spent over an hour engaging with the boat

Sea jellies are another species we see occasionally

Sea jellies are another species we see occasionally

We have been very lucky as of late with all kinds of surface activity

We have been very lucky as of late with all kinds of surface activity

A young humpback breaching

A young humpback breaching

A humpback's powerful kick

A humpback’s powerful kick

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