Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Humpback Sightings

Seeing Humpback Whales in Australia was one of the most moving experiences of my life. While sailing in the Whitsunday Islands, our skipper spotted a mother with her calf. We watched them for nearly ten minutes from the deck of the catamaran as the mother nursed her young, floating almost motionless in the cerulean blue ocean. From time to time the mother would spout, followed by a miniature blow from her babe. It was like two fountains going off in a sequence, first the big one, then it's mini-me.

Eventually, nursing time was up and the calf swam alongside her mother, still spouting in near unison if not in profusion. And then, as suddenly as it all started, the show was over. The mom flipped her tail and dove deep, taking her young with her.

Sorry, no luck getting a picture of the whales, so here's a shot of our "tender" dragging along behind the sail boat.

I sighed in awe and wonder. These great creatures swim thousands of miles each year, from their summer home of Antartica where they gorge on krill to warmer waters in the north where they mate and give birth. I saw them once or twice as a kid growing up in California and feel blessed to witness them again as an adult adventuring in Australia.

Here's to hoping that Humpback Whales will continue to roam the waters of this world, undisturbed and exuberant in their displays of joyous acrobatics!


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