How Long do Humpback Competition Pods Last?

How long do Humpback competition pods last? Today was a great example of just how long a Humpback Whale competition pod can last as throughout the day the same pod competed. It was a stunningly beautiful winters day in Augusta and after much rain it was wonderful to stretch out in the calm, sunny conditions. The whales were also enjoying the weather but their morning had higher intensity levels as a competition pod of seven Humpback Whales rumbled through the bay. The boys were boisterous and powerful as they pushed and shoved while trying to get closer to the female. One male in particular would “bullfrog” as he stretched out his body with pectoral fins wide, throat expanded and skating along the surface showing off his beautiful baleen. It is always an amusing and dominant display to observe amongst the comp pod with usually only one male taking on this threatening display towards the others. The pod competed throughout the morning and as it was now time to head back to the Augusta Boat Harbour we wished them well as they continued on through the bay.

Our afternoon was just as lovely with the good weather and calm sea escorting us back out to the sighting grounds. The same pod and individuals from this morning’s competition pod were still competing much to our amusement. It is a great example as to how these competition pods can go on for many hours depending on the whales involved. The female was yet to choose a male escort and she kept them competing to find out who was going to be the most suitable option. The local Bottlenose Dolphins had by now heard all the commotion and came racing over to join in with the fun. The playful energy of the dolphins seemed to relax the whales as for a short time things became a little bit more social amongst the boys. All eyes were still firmly on the female though and after a full day of competing in Flinders Bay she decided it was time to get back on the road north as she moved towards the reef line. Passing under the ever watchful Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse she navigated her way through the reef as all the boys followed and showed no signs of letting her out of their sight. Wishing them well we know that it is highly likely the boys will follow her through the night as she moves north and this is how some competition pods can go on for days until the female has found her perfect match.

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