Close Encounters with Humpback Whales #3

The Friendliest Whale: photo credit Ted Cheeseman

Swimming with whales is the thrill of a lifetime. The Silver Bank is truly one of the few places you can do this anywhere in the world. I bet just watching someone who is swimming with a 40 foot 20 ton mother humpback whale and her new calf will give YOU goosebumps! Check out these two clips shot by fellow traveler Mike Morelli from Seattle. Might take a minute to load.

Mother and calf encounter #1

Mother and calf encounter #2

Read more.. Saturday, March 31st, 2012

Close Encounters with Humpback Whales #2

The Silver Bank is a very special place where one can observe the interaction between mothers and new born calves in an environment that the whales consider safe and are therefore relatively relaxed. No predators present. Tom Conlin and his team have so much time with these animals that they are able to “read” behavior of mother calf pairs and get observers in the midst of animals that are comfortable and often curious. Technique in approaching these interactions quietly is very key in being able to witness whale behavior at close range. These whales are so big you have to adjust your “comfort” zone to accept close encounters of these creatures without freaking out. It is an unforgettable experience to decode the mystery of what happens to a whale once they blow and slip below the surface. Truly magical!

Here are some more images:

Denise was a cool whale wrangler! She really knew her stuff.

Read more.. Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

Close Encounters with Humpback Whales

This expedition brought us to the warm Caribbean waters off the north coast of the island of Hispaniola to the gentle nursery waters of the Silver Bank. Named for Spanish galleon treasures lost in 16th and 17th century storms – this area was long before New World colonial times, the winter destination of 6 – 8,000 North Atlantic Humpback whales who arrive each year to birth and nurture new calf’s and to cavort and mate to perpetuate the species. We worked with Humpback whale zen master Tom Conlin and his team, who have been active for Humpback conservation for more than 22 years and make a business out of showing photographers and thrill seekers, like us, this unique look into the natural world..

Read more.. Monday, March 19th, 2012