Friday, June 26, 2009

'Whaling' by light aircraft

Last Tuesday (23rd June), a concerned observer reported to Booderee National Park (Jervis Bay) staff that they had just observed a large whale that appeared to be entangled in fishing net. The next morning a helicopter was sent out briefly to track down the whale, without luck. So a few hours later, my dad I boarded a small fixed-wing plane and surveyed the coastline north from Ulladulla to Wollongong. 

We encountered 6 or 7 Humpback Whale pods on their northward migration, consisting of 26-29 individuals. Good looks were obtained of almost all the whales. However, we couldn't find any whales that were entangled or distressed. It is possible that the whale in question had already headed beyond Wollongong by this point, and could have been in the vicinity of Sydney. 

Still, it was an interesting experience, and other than the humpbacks, we saw pods of Short-beaked Common Dolphin and Bottlenose Dolphin, as well as a raft of 5 Australian Fur-seals.

1 comment:

  1. What a delightful experience especially seeing these marvellous creatures from high altitude.