Fall migration isn’t just for the birds!
September 9, 2019
During the fall months, humpback whales begin their long migration from cold, food-rich waters in the north to the warm waters of the southern calving grounds. The whales usually seen closest to the California coast move from the Pacific Northwest coasts to the waters off Mexico. Unlike their larger cousins, blue whales, humpbacks eat small fish in addition to krill and hunt along their migration route. We’ve recently seen a sudden influx of humpbacks around the island as a large wave of migrants coming down from the north are drawn in close to the island by large schools of bait fish like anchovies.
On one incredible day, August 10th, we were able to count 106 whales in the waters surrounding us and observed feeding flocks, sea lions, and sea birds in every direction. The massive feeding event continued into the next day and sea conditions were good enough for us to take one of the on-island boats out for a closer look. It was an absolutely breathtaking experience!