Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Whalin' then Bailin'

Sam looking for whales in the harbor
No, not bailing the boat!
Sam and I have never been whale watching so we decide that this was a perfect opportunity to go.  I didn't  know this, but Monterey Bay has a thriving underwater environment that provides a feeding ground for the marine life that migrate up and down the coast. This time of year, the humpback whales are doing their thing, eating krill, anchovies, sardines, and other fish. Now, being a midwestern girl, I had studied all those nice BALEEN whales in elementary school--even memorized a bunch of food that they eat, but I had never, ever, seen one before... well, except for our family's non-politically correct trip to Seaworld when I was about ten...
We were lucky and had about thirty people instead of sixty for our three and a half hour tour. We had a "naturalist" on board who had a great sense of humor, and a love of the ocean.
Sam about to teach our naturalist a few things
Well, about fifteen minutes from shore, one of the passengers spotted the first whale. It was doing move called "pec slapping" (which I kept hearing as "pig slapping" which made absolutely no sense to me. I figured if a humpback wanted to slap his pig, that was no business of mine....) Anyway, the whale was actually slapping its pectoral fin on the water. The reasons for this are disputed, and if I had better internet, I could try and find some answers for you. This show continued for a long time, and was really amazing. Here is my picture of it:
Yeah. That's what I'm saying. 

Yeah. Every time I took my camera out, it stopped. Whoops.
Later on I got a great picture of one of the humpbacks diving, though....
Diving..... and....

And Sam got some video of it, but if I were to try and upload that, we wouldn't do anything else today at all, so we'll have to add that exciting show later. So to wrap things up quickly, whale watching was great. I loved being on the boat in the middle of such a beautiful area. Highly recommended!

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