A Strange and Beautiful Dance

Humpback whales are largely solitary creatures, spending the majority of their lives by themselves or with their young. Each summer they make the 3,000+ mile trek to Alaska in order to eat incredible amounts of food before heading back to the warm, yet nutritionally deficient waters of Hawaii (other humpbacks travel over 8,000 miles biannually). However, occasionally the whales will use their advanced mammalian brain and arsenal of complex vocalizations in order to communicate to each other and gather together into a large pod in order to feed.

The whales will begin to circle, deploying a stream of bubbles from their blowholes in ever decreasing concentric circles which act as a net to capture small fish, krill and other food. Some whales blow the bubbles, some dive deeper to drive the prey toward the surface, and others herd the fish into the net by vocalization, then all at once they close in on the circle and ascend out of the water simultaneously.

These whales were spotted bubble net feeding for three consecutive days in the same area. All one had to do to catch this magnificent show was to watch the birds furiously circling the area, they would all swoop down onto one spot, hoping to catch a spare fish or two, and seconds later these stunning leviathans would surface mouths first from the sea.  On the fourth day, they had scattered and returned, once again, to their sequestered existence.

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2 Responses to A Strange and Beautiful Dance

  1. daddy bob says:

    GREAT pics

  2. Suzy says:

    UNBELIEVABLE AND UNBELIEVABLY BEAUTIFUL…….NO WONDER YOU LOVE IT THERE AND DON’T WANT TO LEAVE. ANY GOOD JOBS FOR CRIPPLED 55 YEAR OLDS WITH EMOTIONAL / MENTAL / PAIN / DEPRESSION ISSUES???!!! IF SO, I’M THERE!

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