Saturday, May 22, 2010

Whale of a good time.. yeah, really

I went out on a 4-hour whale watching tour today with the Dolphin Fleet in Provincetown, Mass. What fun.

We had such a successful day that Mike the tour guide/oceanographer on our boat reminded us several times that we were seeing "an obscene" amount of whales. "Remember, it's not always like this," he said. I guess he was afraid of us overselling future trips.

It was wonderful, if not just a little obscene. We saw between 30 and 35 whales all around the boat. And one was a calf hanging out with its mama.

I had seen humpback whales in Hawaii where they mate. In New England, in the spring, humpbacks are summering, eating, feeding, and the behavior is different. They agitate the water, frightening the fish so they gather in a nice snack-like clump. The whales then dive down, turn around and drive up to the surface with mouths open.

Mike taught us to keep an eye on bubbles and birds. The whales blew the bubbles to agitate the fish. The birds zoomed in to pick up fish the whales missed. Birds even sat on the whales' mouths as the giant mammals moved on the surface ... apparently waiting to pick up fish that didn't get swallowed up.

The whales gave us a show that just wouldn't end. In fact, our time was up and we had to return to Provincetown long before they had filled their bellies. Beautiful. It was just a wonderful day... great weather, endangered species trusting us to hang out in their feeding ground. And, as Mike says, remember, it's not always like this.

Photos and video by Robin J Phillips

Robin, Tempe


Melissa said...

What a wonderful time! There is something truly magical about being a part of their day, on their turf. :o)

Banteringblonde said...

This really brings back memories of my childhood ... I grew up on the east coast and each year we went whale watching ... I can almost smell the salty air....

Lavender Luz said...

Amazing! I've never seen anything like this.

Sounds like you two had a very special time in MA.

DaisyGal said...

that sounds truly AMAZING, I love the pics.

thanks for sharing!!!!

Sheri said...

I am visiting from Lori's Perfect Moment Monday!

Your video and photos were REALLY cool! How lucky to have seen so many whales! Did you get off the boat and go buy a lottery ticket? :)

Thanks for sharing your Perfect Moment!

cn2007 said...

That's so cool! I've never seen whales up close at all, but getting a special view of them at this time of year had to be really neat.

Glad you had such a great time!

- Cassandra

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