A perfect day..
We didn’t have to travel far today, we already met our first humpback whale just off Cowan Cowan, just north of the Tangalooma Wrecks! It was a young juvenile whale on his own. He showed off a few high breaches followed by some tail lobs and tail and pectoral flipper slaps. Then he came over for a really close look at us, swimming past the stern and alongside our boat for a few minutes before moving on.
As we continued to head up to the northern end of the island we came across lots of sea birds, feeding on large schools of baitfish off the northern beach and also around Flinders Reef. There were several Australasian gannets, crested and Caspian terns, cormorants and even two ospreys amongst them. It’s always nice to see so many sea birds feeding, as they are doing it quite tough these days. It’s estimated we’re losing about 1 million sea and shore birds every year, mostly because they are not finding enough food anymore, with fish stocks declining, due to overfishing and pollution.
Between Flinders and Cape Moreton we also found a few other pods of humpback whales, most still travelling North while a few juveniles already seemed to be heading back South towards Antarctica. So we are now coming towards the end of the northern migration towards the breeding grounds off Northern Queensland, and over the next few weeks we will be seeing more and more whales returning on their way back South towards Antarctica. That’s generally the time where we also see more whales entering Moreton Bay, like our first sighting today off Cowan Cowan, as opposed to on the way North when they mostly travel along the outside of Moreton Island. This is great for us as it means we get to watch their antics in the nice sheltered waters of the bay and don’t have to spend as much time travelling to find whales. In other words, now is the perfect time to come out for a whale watching cruise!