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Right Whales, Humpback Whale, Dolphins, Shackleford Horses and Turtles – A “National Geo” Day

Written by Keith_Rittmaster. Posted in Uncategorized

April 20th, a perfect day for Photo ID and we were out there early, welcomed by ‘sundogs’.
all photos by Keith Rittmaster
There were lots of dolphins – adults, juveniles and a couple of calves.
Then we saw a mom and calf right whale and nearby them, a humpback whale – we were surprised to see the two species so near each other

To the left is the right whale mom’s head while blowing and the right shows mom and calf along side each other. The mom is ‘Insignia’, #2645, and her calf was first seen with her on March 5th south of us. Insignia was born in 1996 and has been seen in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Mass Bay, Cape Cod Bay, Great South Channel, Gulf of Maine and the Bay of Fundy. Insignia’s mom is #1245, ‘Slalom’, who was born in 1982. ‘Slalom’ is the calf of #1140, ‘Wart’. New England Aquarium keeps an extensive North Atlantic Right Whale Catalog.
As Keith and Nan compared our records and photos and the North Atlantic Right Whale Catalog
they discovered they had seen Insignia as a yearling with Slalom, her mom, off Fort Macon 23Feb1996. That was exciting and makes us feel good about all the data collecting and recording we do.
Then we saw the humpback whale who was near by at the same time.
We saw the humpback ‘lunge feed’ facing in our direction. It was very impressive but it happened so fast, we didn’t get a picture.
And if all this wasn’t enough, we also met with a number of loggerhead turtles.The first picture shows him/her surfacing to breathe and the next swimming underwater, where he looks like he is flying..

What a day ! And then, on the way home we saw one of the Shackleford Horses resting on the ocean side shore.

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Comments (3)

  • Parag


    Humpback whale (like all baleen whales) are seasonal feeders and carnivores that filter feed tiny crustaceans, plankton, and small fish from the water.


  • Spyhoplog


    Yes, the humpback was feeding on a school of small mullet.


  • Spyhoplog


    Sorry for the mistake. The humpback whale was feeding on a small school of Atlantic menhaden (Brevortia tyrannus)not mullet.


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