Went “Whale-Watching” today with Tom and Robbie, and we saw a dozen or so, only minutes out into Flinders Bay, sailing from Augusta, just round the corner of Western Australia into the Southern Ocean. Dozens of dolphins too of at least two varieties, feeding in the river-mouth and out in the bay. Although Southern Right and Blue Whales are also to be seen there, the whales we saw were all Humpbacks, at least one cow and calf, several bulls including an enormous one that came right up to and under the boat on several occasions – “you could taste the anchovies” as it blew. The main behaviour seen is the “porpoising” along as a group, but also aggressive head-lungeing between the bulls, and tail lifted high as they dive away, and rolling onto sides exposing their characteristic long knobbly pectoral fin, and turning right onto their backs as they rolled under the boat. Dolphins bow-running the whales as well as the boat. For a trip with “no guarantees” expectations were thoroughly exceeded. We couldn’t have scripted it better.
Seems Augusta has consistent regular action in season, as Flinders Bay is use by groups of whales congregating up from Antarctic waters and interacting with each other as they prepare to migrate northwards.