Monday, August 30, 2010

A New Whale!

The whale count in the area is increasing! In addition to Ice Cap and Deuce there is a gorgeous new whale that was feeding in the area of Friday. This new whale has striking flukes. Most of the flukes are white, while they are edged in black. Never have I seen gray whale flukes so stunning.

The number of summer resident gray whales that I have observed with white flukes is low; four to be exact. These whales are Scarback, Dine and Dash, Snowflake, and Ghost. Scarback’s flukes have whitened with age, as I have observed this through my photos of her since 1992. On my web site and in my book on page forty five you can see how Scarback’s flukes have changed over time. The new whale is a large gray whale with many barnacles on the rostrum. My feeling is that this whale is a older female. Females are about five feet longer than the males and after watching Scarback’s flukes whiten, I making an educational guess that this new whale’s flukes are turning whiter with age.

The new whale was extremely friendly, approaching my boat within feet as we remained motionless in the water. I am rapidly becoming known as the “Whale Whisperer.” When I speak to the whales, they come closer! On one trip, my passengers and I were clapping and encouraging the whale to come closer, and the whale came right up to the boat, lifted its head, and then went right under the boat. I hope this whale stays in the area.

Please help me name this new whale. I have pictures of the left and right dorsal hump on the web site along with the dorsal and ventral flukes. We need a name that relates to some pattern on the dorsal humps that also relates to the whiteness of the flukes. Looking at the humps myself, I see patterns of birds. To give me your ideas, go to and then click on naming new whale. The name will go in the new edition of my book and the winner of the name game will receive a free boat ride.

Join me out on the ocean for your chance to see the whales up close and personal!

1 comment:

  1. I see your picture of the flukes, but cannot successfully navigate through the website to find the dorsal shots you talk about. Any help??