Many of these humpback whales in this area, Hancock, Crisscross, Rocker, Bandit, and our beloved Salt with her 14th calf Sriracha, were intent on their feeding and gave us quite a show. The Humpbacks treated us with bubble net feeding, breaches and displayed their unique flukes under ever improving light conditions. However, there was more than one star of the show.
|Humpbacks bubble feeding|
Not long after our departure from Gloucester we encountered 4-5 Harbor Porpoises and soon a Minke and Finback whale with the brief presence of an Ocean Sunfish! Throughout the day scientists, volunteers and interns from NECWA, Mass Audubon, and the Stellwagon Bank National Marine Sanctuary kept the ship entertained with commentary on animal behaviors, witty jokes, a free nature-themed raffle, and pre-Halloween treats.
|Michael coiling the plankton net|
|Salps (clear, globular animals) and copepods (smaller reddish creatures)|
Despite an unsuccessful chumming attempt to attract our favorite sea faring birds, we did see large numbers of shearwaters, including great shearwaters, Cory's shearwater, sooty shearwaters, manx shearwaters, as all as Northern gannets and jaegers who kept pace with our vessel and often with the feeding whales.
|Our fearless companions|
Thank you to Krill Carson for organizing this trip and to our captain, participants, and scientists!
Most updated species List is below: