Guide Summary and Photographs
For many, the idea of Monday brings with it a sense of doom and gloom, but not here, in our little corner of paradise. For us, today was a perfect day at the office, with the swell dropping a bit and splendid whales on all 3 of our trips. Although it seems as though many of the Southern Right Whales that were in our bay have moved into other areas, this did not stop us from having some memorable sightings.
On our first trip, we were fortunate enough to find a beautiful mating group of Southern rights, half way between the harbour and Dyer Island. There was a lot of rolling around and yet again, we were able to catch a glimpse of a large white blaze on the belly of one of the individuals. Back in the day, open-boat whalers used to refer to these whales as Black Whales, due to the rest of their bodies being really dark in colouration. We really enjoy seeing the stark contrast between this two colours – or shades if one wants to get technical- and this was definitely one of the highlights of the trip.
The second trip of the day got lucky more than a few times, spotting the world’s largest predatory shark, the Great White, at Slashfin before spotting the world’s largest bony fish, an Oceanic Sunfish just after we had made our way over The Clyde Reef System. These large fish are said to come up to the surface of the water to let the sun get rid of parasites found on the sides of the fishes’ body, but, in our area this is also where they’re catching quite a few Box Jellyfish, which seems to be a favourite amongst these Giants.
Back to the whales, we got to see Both Southern Rights and a Brydes Whale on this trip. We had an enjoyable sighting of the Brydes, who are usually fairly shy, as the whale spent quite some time at the surface. Comically, as the Brydes Whale took a deep dive, the Southern Right Whales came up in exactly the same spot, which caused a little confusion. We also got to see a gorgeous Yellow-Nosed Albatross on this trip.
Our 3rd trip got to see their fair share of the Southern Rights in the Geldsteen, just in front of Dyer Island but a juvenile Humpback whale really took the cake on this one. Just behind Geyser Rock, we got to see this magnificent beauty lobtail. This is when the whale slaps it’s tail fluke against the water, creating a substantial amount of noise and an absolutely spectacular sight. Humpbacks are said to do this for communication, but this little guy could have also just being fooling around. The only way to really get to the tail end of this would be to ask the whale itself.
There is definitely a certain beauty in not always knowing what is going on in the minds of these animals. It is probably the reason why so many of us are drawn to the ocean, the mystery of it all, the curiosity that is created by us just being able to skim the surface.
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