Seas were a bit lumpier than we’d hoped the morning of May 13th. We were in the same area that we ended the day before, with a handful of right whales around. We surveyed north, trying to find more of a concentration. Around 1030 hours, we got into an area with about a dozen or so right whales. It’s as far north as we’ve been during the whole cruise. Around position 41 51.5N x 69 28.0W (check the NOAA ship tracker for our location at all times). The seas calmed a bit, and we launched both small boats and got in about six good hours on the water.
In the gray boat, we biopsied another older right whale that had never been sampled! In their trusty inflatable, BooRadley, Mark and Nadine had a good tag attachment, over three hours! The winds really picked up quickly, and it got snotty fast. Always seems like we are downwind from the ship when this happens and have to slog our way back into the seas. No matter though, it was another great day on the water and all back aboard by 1730hrs.
We were not involved in the right whale disentanglement that day, but could hear a bit of it on the radio. For those of you who don’t know, NOAA’s aerial survey team located an entangled right whale off the coast of Chatham, MA, (about 30nm south of where we were working) and circled there, staying with the whale to assist the Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies disentanglement response team in locating it as quickly as possible. The response team, with guidance from our aerial team, was successful in fully disentangling the whale.