2 June 2021
There are days when we come to work and feel incredibly blessed to do what we do, and a bit gob smacked that we get paid to share the amazing experience of encountering whales for the first time with our passengers.
Today is one of those days! It has been smiles all round our crew and passengers after the morning cruise aboard the Hinchinbrook Explorer came across active juvenile whale just in front of the Fingal Island Lighthouse. He started by showing off he’s force by tail slapping the surface of the water, and then became very inquisitive of what was occurring around him by making his way across to the vessel on the bow. Can you imagine the thrill of watching a whale approach the boat, and as he gets closer viewing the amazing white glow beneath the surface of the water of the light patches on the whale’s blubber.
When a whale approaches a vessel in this manner this is called a ‘mugging’ and in the world of whale watching this is the only type of mugging you will wish to encounter in life. Whales are naturally inquisitive mammals and are known to take an interest in boats and their passengers and can be notorious for spending time circling or swimming beneath a vessel. When this occurs our skipper will idle the engine until the whale has moved safely away from the vessel.
Captain Rob has taken the Hinchinbrook Explorer back out towards Fingal Island for our afternoon cruise where we have spotted a pair of Humpback Whales a few hundred meters from the Lighthouse. The whales were spending long period of time under the water, on sounding dives. A whale will use this time under the water like a road map. From memory of previous migration with their mother as a calf & juvenile they will track their travels by markings or sea beds to guide their location and the direction they should continue on to reach the warm waters of Queensland in northern Australia.