Finally, another whale that we normally see, but hadn’t this year, showed up! We saw Etch over the weekend. Always a popular whale because of the feeding style–3 slaps of its large tail no the surface. Oddly enough, yesterday we saw Etch-a-Sketch feeding using bubble clouds. Whales will blow a large blast of bubbles deep in the water and when the bubbles rise, the fish are trapped inside. It makes life easier for the whales to feed–using tools. Usually, when a whale uses one method of feeding, they stick to that method. Traditionally, Etch has been a kick feeder. This is when a whale dives deep in the water blowing a ring of bubbles, comes up to the surface, kicks its tail a couple times, then goes down for a mouth full of fish. Click here to learn more about research the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary is doing on feeding strategies. Only time will tell if the whale is changing feeding strategies or perhaps this was just a blip.


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