Perth City of Whales and a perfect example why today as mothers and their calves rested while seven male Humpbacks charged after a female in a competitive competition pod with full bodied, barrel role breaching! A gentle morning to begin with as playful calves rested next to their mums while curiously checking us out from afar. One young female who had with her what appeared to be her first calf due to both of their smaller size swam directly towards us before disappearing below. Our suspicion of being investigated was correct as a few moments later both mother and calf surfaced alongside our starboard after swimming below us and mum slowly swam past as both took the time to have a good look. They may well have been looking for an escort as we noticed the horizon starting to bubble and splash as the unmistakable beginning of a competition pod was forming not too far away.
Approaching the area we had previously sighted large adults resting in we could see between 4-7 Humpback Whales starting to group together when suddenly the leading whale launched into a full bodied, barrel role breach! Spectacular as forty plus tonnes landed on the surface with an almighty splash as it appeared this females primary escort was frustrated with the competition that had begun and was trying to display his strength to the others. None of the other males seemed to notice all that much as all seven whales charged towards the bottom of our 30 meter depth and for the next few moments we waited and anticipated what could happen next. One younger male surfaced first and was quickly followed by the rest when the big male launched once again into a full bodied breach and his beautiful body, although enormous, also showed signs of great weight loss after nothing to eat since approximately April this year and many competition pods later… breaching was his only option to try and discourage the attention of these challengers. Unfortunately for him, these boys were incredibly focused and continued to race after the female and as we Joined the Pod and marvelled at their power we felt very privileged to be here in Perth City of Whales on a magnificent day in WA.