Aug 5

We had a welcomed surprise this morning soon after leaving the harbor. A pod of Atlantic white sided dolphins was spotted and we had some amazing looks at them as they cruised all around us and even played in our wake. This pod contained about 50 dolphins including many mothers with calves. The dolphins have been a little sparse this summer so we were pretty excited to see them!

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Further along, we came upon a large aggregation of humpback whales. We identified a dozen, with more in the area. We had groups of 2, 3, 4, 5 and six and the animals were moving all around and changing groups.  At least 3 mother/calf pairs were identified. It appeared that the moms were feeding with other adults and the calves were milling about, sometimes coming right up to the boat!  At one point, one of the calves breached right next to boat, surprising us all!  It was pretty awesome to just stop the boat and have the whales all around us. We certainly got a good appreciation for just how large humpback whales can be!! Jabiru IMG_9639

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This afternoon we had more surprises. Several whales moved a lot closer to Gloucester! We traveled about 30 miles this morning to the whales, but this afternoon, we only had to go about 20 miles!  We found several humpback whales, a fin whale and even a minke whale!  The huge fin whale was very cooperative, giving us great looks. This whale was ID’ed as BOS# 0021, a whale first seen in 1983.

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Next was a humpback whale named Mogul. This whale was a bit less than cooperative, and was moving around the area quite a bit making it difficult for us to get good looks. Such is wildlife! Mogul IMG_9666

The minke whale surfaced a bit out in the distance.  The next humpback we found was named Doric, a female. She was blowing bubble clouds indicating that she was feeding.   Doric IMG_9711Doric IMG_9695

As we continued on, we came upon a mother humpback with her calf. These 2 were awesome, coming up right along side us! At one point the calf was nursing. It is so wonderful to see humpback whales so relaxed with us close by!

Rapier IMG_9726Rapier and calf IMG_9780

Beautiful day on the ocean! I wish every day could be this warm, calm, and filled with whales!

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