June 17

From Naturalist Dianna

Today the whales were still a bit of a ways away on southern Stellwagen Bank but after a little bit of a ride on the mighty Atlantic Ocean, we were suddenly surrounded by whales. We certainly can’t control where the whales will be located, or what they will be doing but we were pleasantly surprised by our sightings today.

Our first whale was spotted by our captain. Although it never lifted its flukes, showing us who it was, the whale’s dorsal fin was quite unique so we expect to have an identity attached to this whale soon.

first humpback

We continued on to find even more humpback whales! Our next group was a mother and calf pair- the mom is knows as Spoon (or Bilbo by some groups) and she is my personal all-time favorite humpback whale.  Back in the day, well before I even knew that I wanted to study whales as a career, I had “adopted” Spoon through another research organization. Imagine my excitement when I first saw her for the first time in person during my first year of whale watching as a career! I was over the moon excited that “she does exist”! Now, over 20 years later, I still get just as excited to see Spoon, and even better this year to see her with a new calf to add to the population!

Spoon

Spoon

While we were watching the pair, a group of 3 showed up! These were Nile, Pitcher and a juvenile who has yet to be identified. Perhaps this is a new animal and might be named soon! This group was charging all around us, and at one point even came right at us!

Pitcher

Pitcher

Nile, Pitcher

Nile (above), Pitcher

Nile

Nile

juvenile

Unknown juvenile

Thanks to the curious passengers who joined us today. We hope to see you again sometime!

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