July 25, 2012

What a beautiful day out there today. With the whales finally near the northwest corner of Stellwagen Bank, our trips are much shorter because we don’t have to travel quite as far. Today we were treated to a nursery pod of dolphins. There were calves that were probably weeks old judging by their size. Of course I tried to get a cute picture with their heads out of the water, but no luck, just the back ends. Nice nonetheless.

We left the dolphins and saw two mother calf humpback pairs. The first was most likely Rapier, born in 1989 to a whale named Ase. (We never saw the fluke.) This is Rapier’s 6th calf. They were quietly traveling under the surface of the water. The calf came over quite close though to check us out a little bit before heading on their way. Next we looked at Tulip and calf–her 7th calf. Tulip herself was first sighted in 1988 so is at least 25 years old. Unfortunately, Tulip has looked sick since the beginning of the season. No one is sure what is going on with her, but she is very thin–probably thousands of pounds less than other whales her size. She doesn’t appear to be entangled in gear, which can often cause illness. It’s possible she has cancer, she could have an obstruction, something plastic in her belly? At this point we are just grabbing at straws to explain her appearance. If we learn any more we will keep you updated!!

Tulip is extremely skinny!


Till next week for me……

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