Whale Tales

I have a new love and Sasha is her name. I believe she is of Russian descent making her home just off the Alaskan coast. We met while on our whale watching boat tour off the coast of Juneau. Our relationship has grown close in the short time we have known each other, evidenced by her showing me the underside of her tail. She even blew her top! 

Humpback whales, like Sasha, are identified by the shape and underside coloring of their tails. We were fortunate to meet up with Sasha who can be identified by the natural “A” and “K” markings on her tail, making her a favorite among the Alaskan (AK) whale watching community.

Ain’t she beautiful? Can you spot the “A” & “K” on the underside of the left tail?

Sasha says, “so long for now.”

Humpbacks are usually loners. However scientists have noticed a recent change in their behavior.  They (not the scientists) are starting to feed in groups (pods) with one leading the charge. A pod consisting of four to fourteen (!) whales will dive together, waiting for the leader’s signal. Once given, the entire pod rushes to the surface, mouths agape, sucking in all the fish and plankton in their way. They burst through the surface in unison providing one heck of a photographic experience.

“Bubble Feeding” was incredibly exciting to witness. It was tough to time the whale surfacing, compensate for the racing boat and keeping the distant mountain within the frame. Success!

After our whale of an experience, we were treated to some sea lions horsing around while an eagle stood watch.

All of a sudden all the sea lions looked up. Maybe reverentially to the eagle?

Remember, it’s all about the light.