The whales off Fremantle were incredible today as for two hours we observed breaching, tail slapping and pec slapping within meters of our vessel in a truely remarkable interaction. The surface activity had begun even before we arrived in the sighting grounds as the silky calm conditions showed off every subtle movement on the waters surface, including a cheeky male Australia Sea Lion who popped up ever so briefly in-between foraging dives. These two juvenile Humpback Whales were calling out towards everyone and anyone who would listen to their powerful surface active display. Breaching and pec slapping was echoing out all around us as the calm conditions amplified the noise these two beautiful whales were making. Twenty minutes had passed and they decided that since other whales had not yet responded we looked rather interesting and they approached us for a closer look. A short while after their closeup inspection of our vessel they were happy with what they found and resumed breaching and pec slapping so very close to us as we were eye to eye with these magnificent Humpback Whales.
It took over an hour, but three hundred meters away we watched as a second pod surfaced, finally these juveniles had the response they were looking for! Announcing their arrival the two large adults pec slapped and tail slapped as they moved towards us, edging in closer to the juveniles. The young whales did not stop, they continued on and encouraged the continued approach of the adults until finally all four whales were together. Swimming around and around us, the juveniles were a little hesitant at first towards the larger adults, especially the big male protectively watching over his female escort. A clever tactic was swimming underneath us, which seemed to slow the adults down until everyone had taken the time to get to know each other. Now all four whales began pec slapping, tail slapping and breaching together as this incredible display of the Language of the Whales continued. Also today we noticed that the youngest whale in this pod of four was an Orca attack survivor as his missing dorsal fin and scars revealed his challenging past. Although it would have been a terrible wound at the time, this young whale is now strong and healthy, happily living the good life off the coast of Western Australia.