October 6, 2017

October 10th, 2017

From Naturalist Beth:

Not far off the coast of Cape Ann today we found about 12 different humpback whales! We started with Dross filtering at the surface along with Gunslinger and Measles in the area. We watched Spoon traveling with Chromosome, they were both logging at the surface. We found another trio of humpback whales including Reaper, Clipper, and Sword. Clipper began flipper slapping followed by flipper slapping and breaching from Chromosome. We got some amazing looks at him breaching and flipper slapping while Spoon continued to snooze. It was a great day out on the water!

Saturday, Oct 7

October 7th, 2017

Whales have been really close to Gloucester lately!  This makes for trips with lots of time on whales and less traveling time! Today, in spite of foggy conditions to start with, we found 8 humpback whales and one minke whale. Humpbacks included were Dross, Circuit, Clipper, Bayou, Ravine, Owl and her calf.  OWL is one of Blue Ocean Society’s adoptable whales and although she and her calf were a bit hard to keep track of among all the other whales, we did get a couple of looks at the pair. The calf is around 10 months old and should be on its own pretty soon!  Best of luck, little whale!Owl and calf


Wednesday, Sept. 27

September 27th, 2017

What a fabulous day on the water! It’s hard to believe autumn is here as the temperatures were in the 80’s when we left the dock.  We had beautiful sunny skies, relatively calm seas and excellent visibility.

Our first sighting came shortly after we left the dock. Just as we rounded Thacher Island, we spotted a blow. This turned out to be a humpback whale named Dross, a humpback first sighted in 1997.  Dross was feeding using bubble clouds – we kept seeing these bubbles float to the surface shortly after Dross surfaced.  We also had a quick, but great look at a minke whale in this area.



We headed further offshore to the southern end of Jeffreys Ledge and started seeing more blows. Soon, it appeared there were humpbacks everywhere!  It was hard to keep track of them all, but it appears there were at least 17 whales in the area, many of them organized into duos and trios that were spread out all around us!


We got to see some fun behaviors too, including a whale blowing bubble rings, a couple tail breaches and full breaches (which I unfortunately missed with my camera).

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Close look at a humpback

Close look at a humpback

Our last sighting was of three whales. We thought two of these were a mother and calf pair. Suddenly some fog started rolling in and we could barely see 1/4 mile in front of us.  Luckily, at that point it was about time to go, but as we headed out, the calf started belly-up lobtailing over and over, smacking its fluke on the surface and making a lot of splashes.



Still working on some whale ID’s, but I’ll post them here if we figure them out!

Saturday, Sept 16

September 17th, 2017

From Naturalist Beth:

There are few words that can describe this morning! We started our trip with looks at a large ocean sunfish! Nearby, we watched a fin whale traveling. Through the fog we saw a single humpback whale lunge feeding at the surface. A couple miles away we found Cajun and her calf. The calf started breaching when we arrived and continued to breach for 45 minutes! Cajun even breached a few times herself. Cajun surfaced right underneath our bow while the calf breached right next to us. Passengers on the bow actually got wet! In between the breaches, Cajun and her calf were lunge feeding together. Unfortunately, Cajun’s calf is still entangled. You could clearly see the line trailing from her mouth. It was a sobering reminder of the threats that these whales face.

This afternoon the fog moved back in and we were lucky to find 6 humpback whales only 4 miles outside of the harbor! Shuffleboard and Geometry were traveling together. We also had Daffodil, Pleats, and A Plus deep feeding. A fourth unknown whale joined the group at the end of our trip, bringing our total to 6. We also spotted 2 minke whales, and ocean sunfish, and a great pod of harbor porpoise! We had a great afternoon!

Friday, Sept 15

September 16th, 2017

From Naturalist Beth:

This morning started off foggy in the harbor but right outside we found some harbor porpoise and a minke whale. We got some amazing looks at the minke whale as it surfaced right next to the boat. We slowed down to look closely and listen for whales through the fog and spotted a harbor seal. It was such a calm day you could see the seal swimming right beneath the surface. It popped its head up and looked right at us. A few miles away we stopped again on a HUGE ocean sunfish! Everyone was amazed to see such an unusual creature out in the ocean. We continued on through the fog out to the east of Jeffrey’s Ledge and found a pod of around 20-30 Atlantic white-sided dolphins! They were milling around the same area, likely feeding. They jumped through our wake and traveled right under our bow. Even after all the other awesome wildlife sightings we still were hopeful that we would find some of our favorite larger whales. Through the fog, we spotted a quick look at a humpback whale! We traveled to that area and shortly after the fog lifted and revealed about 12 different humpback whales all open mouth feeding! The krill was thick at the surface as the whales lunged through. We watched a single whale, a pair, and a group of three feeding right next to the boat, including Cajun and her calf. The calf was lunging too! She has been nursing throughout the summer but we will see these young whales start to feed on solid food towards the end of the season. It was great to see this mother and her daughter feeding together. The whales swam right underneath us and lunged to the surface on the other side. We passed by about 5-6 more humpback whales feeding. We got some incredible looks inside their mouths, baleen and all. Although we didn’t want to leave, on our way back to Gloucester we spotted 2 more minke whales. The wildlife sightings were amazing today, definitely my favorite trip of the season!

Tuesday, Sept 12

September 12th, 2017

Heading east of Cape Ann, we passed by several minke whales before finding a group of 3 humpback whales!  This trio was new (to me) and goes to show just how much whales move around! One of the whales in the group, Bayou, had a damaged tail- the result of getting hit by a good-sized boat. Luckily, she is just fine in spite of that significant injury.  Four separate fin whales were also spotted- two of which were pretty close to us! An ocean sunfish jumped out of the water just off our port side and Bluefin tuna were seen jumping throughout the trip! On the way home, we even encountered a pod of 30 harbor porpoises!  Fall whale watching is the best!

Sept 5, 2017

September 5th, 2017

Beautiful whale watch today! We found a huge fin whale (ID’ed as #0932) and ocean sunfish (scientific name is Mola mola- a fish so nice, they named it twice

They were just off of Thatcher Island- only 30 minutes off of our dock. We continued on to find at least a dozen humpback whales and a minke whale still not far from Gloucester. Spoon (aka Bilbo) was hanging out with Longboard and Tear, while Shuffleboard was with Patches, and several other humpbacks were in the mix as well! Awesome day with blows all around and whales close by!

Labor day Weekend!

August 31st, 2017

Lots of stuff happening in Gloucester this weekend!

33Rd Annual Gloucester Schooner festival

Schooner Fest 12 019

Celebrate Gloucester’s fishing heritage with a festival of Schooners! Come watch the Mayor’s Race and see some historic fishing schooners including: the Adventure, The Ardelle, The Thomas E Lannon, The Bald Eagle, The Green Dragon, the Sugar Babe, the Redbird, and the Lewis H Story.  Some other events include a clambake, a concert and a Parade of sail!  See the full list of events HERE

Capt. Bill’s Fireworks Cruise


Join Capt Bills for our annual Fireworks night cruise! We may also catch a glimpse of the Boat Parade of Lights!

Saturday Sept. 2nd @ 8 PM boarding @ 7:45 PM

Adults $20  Children $15

Reservations Recommended. Cash Snack Bar

Gloucester Block Party


Don’t miss the LAST block party of the Summer! This Friday Sept. 1st, Main street will come alive with outside restaurants and games and activities! For more info click HERE.

Tuesday, August 29

August 29th, 2017

Today we departed at 11:00 and headed north to Jeffrey Ledge. Although we were never actually on the Ledge itself, we found lots of fun activity. A huge fin whale was seen just off of Gloucester/Rockport. This was #0932, a whale first seen in 2009!


We passed by a few small pods of harbor porpoises before seeing a group of four humpback whales! These whales were pretty mellow but we did see a couple of tail flicks from Pinball (adoptable through Blue Ocean Society)!  Image00043

Jabiru (featured on Blue Ocean Society’s current shirts and sweatshirts) was with the group as was Spoon (some of you know her as Bilbo, but I can’t bear to say that over the PA system…) and Gunslinger.  Image00062Image00072Image00119

It was really cool to watch the group surface in nearly the same formation each time, though Gunslinger wasn’t always with the ladies. After watching this group for a bit, we headed home but just as we were leaving, a harbor seal pup surfaced close by! Image00130

Wonderful day with beautiful scenery of the north shore coastline!

August 22, 2017

August 22nd, 2017

From Naturalist Dianna:

This morning we found a big pile of humpback whales near the southern end of Stellwagen Bank. Venom, Nile, Cajun and her calf, Springboard and her calf, Infinity and more were all in the area, with Cajun’s calf being quite active!

This afternoon, the wind picked up as predicted but seas were still workable for whale watching. We saw a couple of trios, a few pairs, and many single humpback whales! One even breached right in front of us! Some of the same whales from the morning trip were seen, but Aerospace was spotted on this trip along with several more that I still need to identify!