Update: March 3, 2011
have a migration,” proclaimed Michael Smith after a big day
of northbound sightings. Visit the lagoons in this week’s slideshows
and video clip. Touching a baby whale, the teen in this image tells
how it feels. What does it mean if a whale-watcher calls 'BLOW,
at 45 mil'? Decode when you learn some whale watcher's lingo.
Week's Report Includes:
of the Week
Watching: News from Observation Posts
on the globe to see the migration route. Then click
red dots for latest news from our Posts.
This week: See field notes from
#1, #2, #3, #6, #7, #9
Jim Taylor, Baja Ecotours
13 northbound whales on Feb. 27, Michael Smith (Post #7)
have a migration." That was a big day for ACS/Los Angeles (#6),
too. "We are nearing the end of our migration turnaround;
most gray whales are heading north, but we are still getting southbound
the nursery lagoons,
mothers and babies now rule. Alex, Addie, and
Chelsea are some lucky kids who tell us what they saw in two of
How does Addie describe the feel of a baby whale's skin? We
have fascinating field reports from Lagoons #1, #2 and #3!
Schulman-Janiger notes: "This season the southbounders
kept coming and the northbounders started late; however, with
of many grays in Baja,
I expect our counts to pick up soon, giving us a final count
higher than last season's." That would be news to celebrate.
will see the season's
first northbound cow/calf pair be spotted? It should be soon.
Visit the Nursery Lagoons!
the Migration: Using Daily Data
weather took its toll on several days. "If we
cannot see, we cannot count," Michael Smith sums
Still, both California point-count sites had their biggest
days so far. "The last day of February was further indication that the migration flow has begun. We saw eight northbound gray whales and that made twenty-one for the past two days, a nice pace for this time."
This Week's Questions
notice a pattern and write a prediction.
pattern do the data from both California posts
show about gray whale traffic so far?
changes do you predict you'll see when your next data comes in
two weeks? Why?
||Gray Whale Journal
Feb. 22: Our
first gray whale was large, northbound, close enough to hear its blows.
- Post #7, Mar. 1: A
trio of gray whales appeared due south, a long way out.
watchers know the first sign of the gray whale will probably be its
spout or “blow”—a bushy tower of spray. A blow
may be visible for miles on calm days. But
how can whale watchers tell how close or far that whale is? How do
they call out the sighting so others can see it too? Mike shows you
Watcher's Lingo: How Far Offshore?
after your lesson with Mike:
- If you
hear a fellow whale-watcher call "BLOW, 300 degrees at 45 mil," how
far offshore is that whale?
and further questions in your Gray Whale Journal.
See the blow? When a gray whale surfaces, it exhales. In
a split second the
whale empties lungs the size of a VW. The
with such force that the spouts can be 15 feet high and might be heard a
half mile away.
Gray Whale Resources to Explore!
What do you see?
The Orca Network
Next Gray Whale Migration Update Will Be Posted on March 16, 2011.