Whales have started to return to La Baja. We had the most incredible encounter yesterday with a newborn humpback whale calf. Literally one hour old. This cute little guy was pristine and gorgeous and reminds us of how special the ocean is. And how delicate the balance is.
The gray whales are back at San Ignacio Lagoon
Humpback whales are moving down La Baja and we are seeing them around the bait balls and Mexico sardine run. We expect to see them down at Socorro any day now!
We are on the edge of our seats, waiting for the first blue whales of the season. Stay tuned for updates on whale sightings.
A note for anybody interested: Humpback whales are among the most charismatic of the megafauna that we see around La Baja. These magnificent whales, megaptera novaeangliae, are named for their giant pectoral fins, the largest of any whale. Their name translates to giant wing. At one time, we used to see over 1200 humpbacks around Socorro during the winter season, while we would never see any whales around the inside waters of British Columbia. The humpbacks have always stuck to the outer coast of Vancouver Island, but that distribution has changed. More whales spend the winter in BC in Alaska than ever before and don’t do the migration down to Mexico. We still see around 400 whales at Socorro and their behavior is as inspiring as ever.
They are around the islands for mating and breeding. The males literally go at each other like 40 ton train locomotives, slashing at each other with their barnacle-covered pectoral fins and sometimes drawing blood, trying to gain dominance and position themselves with a breeding female. One of the very special things about Socorro is that we can often hear the humpbacks sing while we are in the water. Something we don’t experience further up the coast, some of these guys are amazing opera singers! While others are… not such great singers. But they all sung the same song at up to 120 dB. This is much louder than a jet airplane taking off and is certainly enough to stun anybody who happens to be very close to the melodic singer.
Whales all around the world sing the same song, which gradually evolves. It’s all so cool. And we were so lucky yesterday to see this newborn super cute baby.