Whalewatching 2016: Part 7

13 Mar
A female Humpback whale cruises the waters of waters of Ma'alaea Bay in the company of her primary male escort.

A female Humpback whale cruises the waters of Ma’alaea Bay in the company of her primary male escort. (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

23 January Cruise

Although this cruise didn’t include any of the violent behavior usually associated with surface-active competition pods or spectacular breaching, the weather and surface conditions were ideal for photography, and there were a few nice (if somewhat less spectacular) surprises.

A pair of whales performs a double flukes-up dive.

A pair of whales performs a double flukes-up dive. (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

 

Nice closeup shot of the flukes-up dive of a mature whale.

Nice closeup shot of the flukes-up dive of a mature whale. Note the neat rows of barnacles encrusting the whale’s flukes. (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

 

A large female cruising at the surface sports a very distinctive dorsal fin with a pronounced hook at its tip.

A large female cruising at the surface sports a very distinctive dorsal fin with a pronounced hook at its tip. (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

 

Closeup shot from a different angle of the female with the hooked dorsal fin.

Closeup shot from a different angle of the female with the hooked dorsal fin. Such a distinctive feature, when paired with the unique coloration pattern of the ventral aspect of the flukes, serves as a strong identifier of an individual whale. (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

 

This closeup shot of a whale's flukes reveal the distinctive wear patterns on the flukes' leading edges.

This closeup shot of a whale’s flukes reveal the distinctive wear patterns on the flukes’ leading edges. (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

 

Perhaps curious about the engine noise of the boat, a young Humpback calf swims close to to the Voyager.

Perhaps curious about the engine noise of the boat, a young Humpback calf swims close to the Ocean Voyager. Note the bright bluish-white of its short pectoral fins just below the surface. (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

 

As the young calf swims past the Voyager to its starboard side, it lifts its head a bit above the surface to get a better look at the boat and its passengers crowding along its rails to get a better look at the newborn.

As the young calf swims past the Ocean Voyager on its starboard side, it lifts its head a bit above the surface to get a better look at the boat and its passengers crowding along its rails to get a better look at the newborn. (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

 

Nice closeup of a mature Humpback performing a round-out dive as it speeds past the Odyssey.

Nice closeup of a mature Humpback performing a round-out dive as it speeds past the Ocean Voyager. (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

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One Response to “Whalewatching 2016: Part 7”

  1. Liz Croonquist 17 March 2016 at 10:49 AM #

    First time I enlarged these whale photos to my full screen, I could actually see the barnacles on a few of the whale tales! Amazing shots!!

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