The Blue Whale season began today as we departed Fremantle for our first experience for Blue Whale season 2018 with much excitement onboard! A beautiful day greeted us as we cruised past Rottnest Island and enjoyed a very special Easter Monday in the sunshine. The first to meet us was a large pod of 30+ offshore Bottlenose Dolphins who raced over to say their good mornings and enjoy some light exercise of bow riding as we all made our way to the canyon edge. We carefully scanned the horizon for the tall and distinctive blow of a giant, a breath that can easily reach seven meters or more in height. Then there it was, a cloud forming from the oceans surface as the exhalation of a Blue Whale erupted into the air… the Blues have arrived!
The powerful breaths continued as oxygen was replenished in preparation for the next sounding dive. Sighting the tail dive of a Blue Whale is not common and is generally dependant on each individual. We were surprised to see the graceful flukes of this Blue lift gently above the surface as she sounded into the Perth Canyon. The beautiful turquoise blue that we have not sighted in a long time sparkled today as she approached the surface and it is a lovely example of how the Blue Whales coined their name. Disappearing into the canyon once more we scanned the horizon and we all jumped when a group of six Common Dolphins cleared the surface in front of us! They seemed shy at first but it wasn’t long before they were dancing around our bow, but one thing did seem strange though as there was only six dolphins.
Common Dolphins are renowned for travelling in super pods of 1,000 or more individuals so only six seemed a bit odd. We enjoyed their company and kept a close eye open for any other pod members and could see some slight movement ahead in the distance. The energy level changed from the six who had been travelling with us as a message was sent out and they took off! Racing at over 30 kilometres per hour, we watched in awe as they propelled themselves clear of the ocean bellow in full bodied porpoising as they raced to meet the rest of their pod. Once they had rejoined we could count approximately 100 individuals, now that is a more common amount of individuals in a Common Dolphin pod!