Southbound Humpbacks

Southbound Humpbacks were sighted today and for the first time this season since sighting our first Humpbacks in May we joined a pod of two adults steadily heading back south. The northern Humpback migration will be transitioning over the next couple of weeks as we begin to sight southbound Humpbacks who are focused on making their way slowly but surely to Antarctica. Our first interaction was with resting escort pods and as we watched another lone Humpback surface just ahead a quick dash moved across our bow and looked suspiciously like a Minke Whale. Continuing on with this whale it wasn’t too long before a second Humpback had approached and we watched on as this new arrival shuffled in close to his new best friend. Travelling alongside us he launched into an enormous peduncle slap to show off his power, before swimming towards us. Seeming curious but wanting to assert his authority, he once again lifted half of his enormous body out of the water and landed with a huge splash only meters from us! The peduncle slaps were working to show off his strength and keep his new friend, who appeared to be a female, focusing her attention on him. We wished them both well as they continued to swim south together and were escorted by Common Dolphins just up ahead appeared encouraging them to keep on heading south.

Our afternoon was incredibly peaceful and as we joined with two mother Humpbacks and their calves we watched on as a nearby Humpback breach sent one of the mothers racing away from the area. As she ventured well away from the breacher we noticed a shadow close by and once again that same darting movement from this morning appeared…. except this time he showed himself. It certainly was a Minke, a beautiful and tiny Dwarf Minke Whale was trailing us and the mother Humpback and her calf. A beautiful sight and special opportunity to witness such a special cetacean species. Our afternoon completed with the gentle movements of mother Southern Right Whale and her curious calf who even climbed onto mums back at one stage before plopping back into the water rather undignified!

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