Hello everyone, and again today was another fantastic day of whale watching. Even with the weather of Danny on our doorstep we were able to get 2 whale watches in today.
Our morning departure started behind Whitehorse Island with a pair of finback whales traveling together. And close by there was a large school of bluefin tuna feeding at the surface…it looked like the water was almost bubbling to a boil and at first I wasn’t sure what I was looking at…it was really cool to see that many tuna! The conditions were much better than we were expecting so John decided to take us offshore in search of the right whales we have been seeing over the past few days, there were no guarentees they would be there but we wanted to try. We made our way towards South Wolf where we quickly located a small group (~5) North Atlantic right whales and everyone was thrilled but John quickly saw a number of blows a few miles to the east so east we went and again we spent our morning with 30-40 North Atlantic right whales…about 10% of the worldwide population. I had decided that I would leave my camera away today, I just wanted to enjoy everything with my own eyes but there was some courting begaviour starting so I quickly went down below and grabbed my video recorder (it was raining so sorry for the rain drops on the lens) and captured this…
The spyhopping, the white belly and chin is something I have never seen…it was AWESOME and if you can hear me sniffing…yes, a few tears were shed. I get rather emotional out there sometimes and I find it hard to put into words how incredible it is and how lucky we are. I have to repeat myself here again because I want everyone to understand that this is something that we do not usually see whale watching out of St. Andrews…yes, right whales usually occur in these numbers and large aggregations in the Bay of Fundy but usually about 35 miles from St. Andrews in the open Bay. These whales can leave our area just as quickly as they arrived and while they are here we need good weather and visibility to get to the offshore area where they are feeding. The researchers in the Bay recording right whale numbers have documented over 80+ individuals so far in the Bay of Fundy.
Our afternoon came with some stronger winds and fog and we were confined to the protected inshore area of the West Isles. We made our way to Head Harbour Passage and we knew that there had been reports yesterday of a humpback in the Passage (we were off the Wolves with the large group of right whales). We certainly found a humpback and to our surprise it was Cork! Cork is a 7 year old female we have been watching since 2004 and all of us at Quoddy Link are quite fond of her. I did manage to get a nice fluke shot (she does not always raise her tail, and we only saw her raise it a few times this afternoon) and her dorsal fin shot shows Wilson’s Beach, Campobello Island in the background.