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© copyright by Captain Gene

© copyright by C
© copyright by aptain Gene
© copyright by aptain Gene
We're just back from another Silver Bank trip!
Straight from the log of Captain Gene himself:
Every day at sea was an adventure this week, and the whales were particularly determined to play hide and seek this week. It was a fair match! Gene’s group had an incredible topside show from an fantastic trio of mum, calf and escort that all together breached more than fifty times over more than an hour’s time. We can’t help but love these surface shows, and especially when it is hard to tell who is having more fun: the whales or the watching guests. It was so much fun the whaleboat ended up following the action until they were seven miles away from the mothership! That’s a record for this season, but it was well worth the long journey home.

There were a few high-energy rowdy groups around, too, as the ratio of available females to prowling males changes as the season carries on. That happens as many of the single females successfully court, mate and become pregnant. Once pregnant, the females know on some instinctual or hormonal level that they’ve achieved their goal and then soon after depart the Silver Bank for their summer feeding grounds – they need to feed for two now! But the male whales will hang around until the opportunity to find a mate has gone and sometimes fights break out over the remaining ladies. Much like a club at closing time!

Meanwhile, Cat’s group were on a mission to find a singer, no matter how long it took. We’ve never used the hydrophone so much in one week. The group of ten that had come aboard all agreed that a singer was the one thing they were most looking for, and Cat was determined to be the genie that granted their wish. But it isn’t always easy! Sometimes the ocean was completely quiet, and other times we could hear a male sweetly singing very very close. We would jump in the water to listen while looking around for where he might be hiding – we know you are here somewhere, we can feel the vibrations from your song! But the very best singer of the week would come in the final hours of the last day. Gene found a singer two miles upwind. We were a fair way away but how could we resist but to go and join? So we hightailed it over there to find the singer had moved off. Well, with two boats working together, we have a much better chance at triangulating. Cue some of the best teamwork of the whole season - this whale is not only an incredible singer, but also hide and seek champion of the Silver Bank. We took turns to move up wind a little way, plunk in the hydrophone, discuss tactics on the radio - and wait. Then one of us would spot a blow in the distance and we’d race over to the general area, plunk in the hydrophone, talk on the walkie talkie.

Spot, race, hydrophone, radio, repeat. It was getting late and we needed to be back before dark. Spot, race, hydrophone, radio. Then, all of a sudden, as we were waiting for a blow… he surfaced RIGHT next to our boat! Cat slipped right in to mark the whale, the guests followed her in, and he sang so loudly for us we could feel the song through our whole bodies. Then he disappeared into the blue, right over to Gene’s boat to give them a turn. Over the next hour we took one more swim each before it was time to go home. Cat’s group decided to put the hydrophone in for one last listen, so he could sing goodbye to us. But just as we did that, he surfaced RIGHT next to us again! Well, we couldn’t miss an opportunity like that, could we! In we went and this time he came right up beneath us while still singing! Although this happens, it’s relatively unusual to see. Everybody was SO happy, dancing and singing and hugging on the boat, laughing all the way back to the Sea Hunter. It was such a lovely encounter, and we were so delighted to end on a high note (no pun intended)...We had many great encounters throughout the week, on the surface and in the water, but this one was one of the most memorable moments of the whole season. We sure hope that this guy is waiting to give us another show on our last week of 2022!

Dive Conditions
Visibility   0 ft / 0 m
Water Temp.   - / -
to Cocos Island  
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