Whale Watching before Our Return

After some stormy weather Sunday night and early Monday morning, the skies have cleared and seas have calmed, conditions good for both satellite ground-truthing and marine mammal observations.  We made it all the way to the mouth of the Bay of Fundy, where we casted the Rosette samplers to collect water several times before turning back south.

Fluke of a right whale. (Photo by Harvey Walsh/NOAA)

As our cruise track took us through the center of the Gulf of Maine, the good weather allowed for some excellent marine mammal sighting opportunities.  Tuesday afternoon we crossed paths with numerous feeding whales including: humpback, fin, right, and minke.  At one point we slowed to collect surface water samples, and several whales were close enough for us to get pictures even with just a simple point and shoot camera.

Two right whales feeding. Photo by Harvey Walsh/NOAA.

Today is our last day of sampling.  We will work our track line down the New Hampshire and Massachusetts coast, finishing up in Cape Cod Bay.  The cruise has been very successful.  All the research groups will be taking lots of samples back to their labs, which will keep them busy until it’s time to head back out to sea again.

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