Up Close and Personal With a Humpback: The Summer's Best Whale Tales
This month, an undernourished gray whale was spotted off Mission Beach and La Jolla in San Diego, entangled in what looked like rope or a fishing line. According to Grind TV, the whale was struggling — slowly making its way north to meet up with the rest of the gray whales in the Arctic. Even with its setbacks, the whale reportedly made friends with some surfers, rubbing its body against their feet.
A 25-foot gray whale, surprises boat owners in the Cabrillo Marina. (Photo: Diane Alps/Cabrillo Marine Aquarium)
With assistance from an anonymous helper, or by a twist of fate, the whale was spotted a few days later untangled. Officials from the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium are keeping an eye on it as it continues to travel north.
Whales are the gentle giants of the sea, and their interactions with humans usually make for great party stories. This one got us thinking, what are some whale stories worth telling? Aside from “Moby Dick,” of course.
So here are some of the most notable whale tales from around the world this summer.
Pilot Whale Pod
Pilot whales have not been seen in Orange County waters for more than 20 years, so you can imagine the surprise these passengers got when they encountered a pod of 50! Passengers and crew members aboard Captain Dave’s Dolphin and Whale Safari in Dana Point, California, were out on one of their regular excursions when the pod, including mothers and newborn calves, paid an extremely rare, and memorable, visit.
Getting a Closer Look
This amazing image was captured by Kate Cummings of the Blue Ocean Whale Watch. According to the Daily Mail, Kate was on a boat near Moss Landing in California’s Monterey Bay when the humpback whale lunged out of the water to feed on a mouthful of anchovies. At just 50 yards from the beach, this is about 50 yards closer than whales typically go. Maybe this not-so-little guy just wanted to say hello to the dog standing on the beach.
A gigantic humpback whale says hello to beachgoers on July 27, 2014.(Photo: Kate Cummings / Blue Ocean Whale Watch)