After yesterday’s stormy weather, we eager to get out and find some animals so we scheduled our fist trip at 8am and had some coffee before to take the chill out of the morning. The swell was busy dropping, but our ride out of the harbour was definitely an adventurous one as we navigated our narrow channel to head into deeper water. Although we had some swell running, the wind had died down completely which made for a gorgeous day. We had 4 trips, so we cruised around the bay on each one, spotting whales and seeing whale else we could find making it’s way through the Atlantic ocean.
While we travelled, we also spotted some large rafts of kelp which had all come together from the previous day’s storm. Kelp has no roots and attaches to the bottom of the ocean via a holdfast, so the swell had evidently removed many specimens from the bottom of our rocky reefs, and when they all came together it was very easy to confuse them with our Southern Right Whales.
Speaking of, we had some spectacular whale sightings today, spotting some whales with awesome markings and having lots and lots of moms and babies in the bay. We’ve still got ton of Southern Right Whales around and we moved through the different groups to check out what they were up to. We got to see some babies playing next to their moms, learning what we believe are skills to be taken with back to sub Antarctica. One of these skills is breaching and we were fortunate enough to have 2 claves strut their stuff, really showing off and giving us some spectacular breaches as they launched their full bodies out the water, returning moments later with a large splash. We also had some nice and close approaches from some curious whales.
We got to sight some other cool animals too, spotting an Ocean Sunfish on our first tour of the day. These strange looking bony fish eat lots of Jellyfish and are a strange but wonderful sight to take in. we also got to see some fish of a different type, spotting some Copper Sharks over at Slashfin. We had some African Penguins on a few of our tours, but we did not head to shark alley today due to some strong surges behind the island. In our bay, we are protected by Dyer Island and The Clyde Reef System, so we had a smooth ride to the island to check it out before returning home each time.