August 8th - 3 humpbacks including "Divot" the humpback with a calf!.. and some snowbirds!
Today was incredible! Not only did we get to see Divot and two of her friends, we also had the pleasure of seeing her calf who was born last winter! Humpbacks spend their winters in Mexico and Hawaii, breeding and surviving on their fat reserves, before spending their summers in Alaska, feeding and replenishing their fat stores once again.
While in Alaska, humpback whales feed on copepods, krill, and small fish such as herring, juvenile Atlantic and Pacific salmon, and anchovies. They are opportunistic feeders, meaning that they do not have a preference for their meals, and will eat whichever of these organisms comes their way.
Humpback whales are filter feeders, meaning they use massive baleen plates that are bristle-like in their mouths, instead of teeth. These baleen plates are made of keratin, which is the same material that makes up your fingernails and hair. To feed, they open their mouths and take in both water and organisms, before closing their mouths and filtering out the water, and saving their delicious meal.
Divot and her crew were especially active today, frequently surfacing, rolling, breaching, and slapping the water with her pectoral fins. The highlight of the day was when the calf breached! This all happened just offshore of neck point, so some landlubbers got to enjoy the amazing views as well.