Whale Watching: Leaping to New Heights

Whale Watching Updates: We are nearing the 300-mark for Gray Whales sighted this season. Highlights this past week have included a pod of over 100 Common Dolphins and a Gray Whale double breach! That means two Gray Whales breached, or jumped with most of their bodies out of the water, at the same time. In the past 4 seasons we have only observed a double breach one other time in January 2014. Though seeing two whales breach in the same area at the same time is really just a lucky coincidence, scientists aren’t totally sure why whales breach in the first place. Part of it seems to be social and it may even be purely recreational. Some researchers have suggested maybe whales breach to discourage parasites. In any event, whale breaching is an awesome sight when you are able to witness it. Thanks to passenger Bob Bolsinger for sharing his beautiful pictures.

Photography Tip: If you are lucky enough to see a whale breaching once, keep your camera ready. Though we never know for sure what these wild animals will do, whales often breach two or more times in succession. If your camera has an action setting, use that option on continuous shoot. That way, you will have multiple images to choose from and may even get a complete set of the perfect breach. 

A Gray Whale breaches off the San Diego Coast. Photo Credit Bob Bolsinger.

A Gray Whale breaches off the San Diego Coast. Photo Credit Bob Bolsinger.

A Gray Whale breaches off the San Diego Coast. Photo Credit Bob Bolsinger.

Photo Credit Bob Bolsinger.

A Gray Whale breaches off the San Diego Coast. Photo Credit Bob Bolsinger.

Photo Credit Bob Bolsinger.

 Please visit our whale watching site for updated whale counts and more information about Birch Aquarium whale watching with Flagship Cruises and Events.

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Scripps Institution of Oceanography UC San Diego