This morning we traveled to the southwest corner of Stellwagen Bank aboard the Sanctuary. Our first sighting was of two humpback whales taking long nonfluking dives, as well as a third named UFO travelling slowly around the area. After watching these three, we moved on to spend some time with Rapier and her calf. Rapier’s calf surprised us with a small roll that exposed its pectoral flipper at the surface, and our last look of these two was a close approach off our starboard side! The visibility in the water was excellent and gave us a great opportunity to observe and compare mom and calf’s total length. We also spotted two large Mola mola at the surface, making for a great multispecies day! 

This afternoon we travelled back out to the southwest corner aboard the Cetacea. We began our trip with UFO and another humpback whale taking long dives. After some great spotting by our eagle-eyed captain Sam, we moved onto some unusual splashing in the distance. It was there that we reunited with Rapier and her calf, who was kick feeding! Rapier flicked her tail on the water’s surface three times in a row before abruptly lunging through a small bubble cloud! It was certainly a fun behavior to see, and one I personally haven’t observed much of this season. What a fun day out on the water!

— Kelsey

humpback whale
Humpback whale Rapier comes close to the boat
humpback whale feeding
Rapier lunges
humpback whale feeding
Rapier filters fish
humpback whale
UFO takes a dive