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Sun Aug 19

Whale Watching

Offshore trip: August 13 and 14, 2018

This year’s trip was not as productive as past year’s trips. A crash of sand lance (sand eel) populations in the Great South Channel has forced many of our typical humpbacks to seek out other prey in other places. We were expecting a  trip with lots of searching, but dense fog everywhere made it impossible.  When the fog lifted we found common dolphins, a grey seal, an ocean sunfish, and a minke, but no humpbacks. It was decided to travel north to the SW edge of Stellwagen Banks national marine Sanctuary and anchor overnight. We weighed anchor shortly after 6:00 AM and found whales within 7 minutes.  It was here that we encountered Etch-a-sketch, then later we found Dyad and her 2018 calf.  It was amazing to watch them nursing. Shortly later we found Diablo. Fog rolled in again, but we were able to spend time with a trio of female humpbacks, Wizard, Perseid, and Dome before having to head to the Cape Cod Canal, then to Oak Bluffs, Martha’s Vineyard, then back to Montauk.

7 humpbacks
1 minke
1 ocean sunfish
Great Shearwaters
Sooty Shearwaters
Cory’s Shearwaters
Manx Shearwaters
Wilson’s Storm Petrels
Northern Gannet
Common Yellowthroat


Wednesday August 15, 2018

3 species of whales again!!

We had some reports of whales and headed towards those coordinates, but didn’t find them. Off we went to the areas where we have been successful on previous trips, and once again found whales. A mom and calf fin whale – were amazing to watch. Their grace  and beauty were evident and we were privileged to watch the calf nursing. What a beautiful thing to observe. We found a minke whale out here as well. It was eventually time to head back, but we were stopped in our tracks by a small humpback.  Shortly thereafter we found a trio of fin whales exactly where we had been searching hours earlier. What an amazing day on the water.

5 fin whales
1 humpback whale
1 minke whale
15 Great Shearwaters
5 Cory’s Shearwaters
2 Sooty Shearwaters
1 Max Shearwater
1 Wilson’s Storm Petrel