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San Diego Whale Watching Season Off to a Great Start

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San Diego 2015 Blue Whale Watching Season

Hornblower Cruises & Events San Diego Whale Watching

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Date Sightings Notes
6/27/15 2 Blue Whales Awesome opening day of Blue Whale season! It was a beautiful day on the ocean, the color contrast between the ocean and sky was gorgeous. Perfect San Diego weather. Passengers from Sweden, Denmark,England, Mexico, Illinois, New York, Pennsylvania, Utah, Texas, Arizona and of course California, were delighted with the Blue Whale sightings. We also saw several sea lions lounging on buoys on our way out of the bay. It was amazing seeing the blue color of the whale just under the surface of the water right before it fluked right by the boat!


6/28/15 2 Blue Whales Today was a great day to be out – swells about three feet with strong wind so some rocking on the boat. Captain Eric provided us with latitude and longitude for the two whales we saw and that info was recorded. First Blue Whale was a good sighting with blows and dives.  The second whale was a fast motivated whale, moving in a northerly direction. Prior to leaving this whale, we got a terrific fluke with the whale in front of the boat – to the delight of the guests on board.


Scientists Track Gray Whale Migration From Big Sur Bluffs After 7 Year Hiatus

Taken from “A Winter’s Watch: Scientists Track Whale Migration From Big Sur Bluffs” from the Montery Herald website

The census in 2011 estimated the current population to be about 21,000, a number that’s been relatively stable for the past 10 years.

“This year, we want to see a stable population or one that’s slightly increasing,” Weller said.

That would be good news for whale watchers, too. Richard Ternullo, the owner of Monterey Bay Whale Watch, said business has been solid so far this season.

“The weather’s been good, so people have been out,” Ternullo said. “It seems like a pretty normal migration in terms of the number. Maybe it was a little bit early as far as when we started seeing the migrants.”

Detecting shifts in when the whales start arriving — and especially when the peak number goes by — is a secondary goal of the census.

“Every given year it might shift a little bit forward, or a little backward,” Weller said.

Whale biologists are also interested in whether the declining levels of Arctic sea ice will affect migration patterns.

“The receding ice is not necessarily a negative thing in the gray whale case,” Weller said.

That’s because it opens up new habitats, and no one is sure what effects this will have on gray whale behavior. But the biggest mystery is still why the whales migrate at all.

“Some people believe they migrate away from areas where calves are in danger,” Weller said, adding that this is his favored explanation.

Another explanation holds that the demands of giving birth require the whale moms to be in warmer waters for energetic reasons. These questions will require many future studies to decide.

For now, this year’s count is still up in the air.

“We won’t really know until the whole thing is over,” Weller said


Taken in part from this article:

Archived: Thar be Whales! Gray Whale Watching Season is off to stormy start in 2014!

With the Southern California storms mostly behind us along with the unusual swells, we are off on the start of another exciting Gray Whale Watching season. Captain Richard Goben, Port Captain is San Diego for Hornblower Cruises & Events called in Monday, Dec. 15 with the Whale Report.

“Good news, we have spotted gray whales today along with a pod of white sided dolphins, for a successful first cruise of the season!” Goben reported.

Whale watching is mid December through the end of April. Hornblower reported two of the most successful whale watching seasons in history for the past two years and are anticipating another outstanding year. Two cruises are offered daily in San Diego with convenient boarding in the heart of downtown San Diego at 970 N. Harbor Drive, San Diego, Ca 92101. Reservations are recommended especially during the weekends on whale watching as a very popular San Diego attraction.