By Captain Dave

As we mentioned in our previous “whale song” blog, Humpback Whales sing amazing songs while in our waters, seemingly using their internal orchestra to communicate with other whales in the area. While these songs are regarded as a form of communication, many wonder if they could also be considered a true form of language which only these magnificent mammals understand. Here is what we do know:

  • The ever evolving whale song has been found beyond our Hawaiian waters; including whales found migrating to place as far flung as Baja and Japan. This implies long distance communication between whales over thousands of miles.
  • The prevailing theory for this long distance sharing of song is the possibility of whales visiting Hawaiian waters passing the song on to others while visiting these far flung breeding grounds.
  • With the exception of these “passed down” songs, most whales will have a song unique to their population (i.e. Whales in the North Atlantic will sing a different tune than those here in Hawaii.)
  • While still theorized to be a form of communication for whales searching for a prospective mate, recent research has shown males generally approach other males mid-song.
  • Whale songs are also believed to imply territoriality, as singers will generally keep a distance of approximately 1/2 mile from other singers.

As research continues, we will update you with any new findings in this very important area of humpback whale behavior. Of course, if you would like to experience the sights and sounds of our wonderful guests for yourself, consider booking one of our Maui whale watch tours or sunset dinner cruises during whale season for a chance at observing the habits of these wonderful creatures in person!

By Captain Dave

As just about anyone who has joined us on one of our Maui whale watch adventures¬†can attest; humpback whales are known to sing beautifully throughout their stay in Hawaii’s waters. Here are a few fun facts on the hows and whys of these fabulous underwater songs . . .

  • Male humpback whales love to sing in our waters; while it is not entirely clear why, researchers believe they do as both a way to attract females, and to ward off encroaching male whales.
  • Whale songs are typically sung 50-60 feet below the waters’ surface, for anywhere between 20 and 40 minutes at a time.
  • While singing, the humpback whale will stay in one spot, nose pointed downwards with their tail pointed towards the surface.
  • Whale songs are extremely complex in structure; with units, phrases, and themes throughout.
  • Adding to the complexity is the fact that while whale songs change throughout the season, as each new season begins, the current season’s song picks up from where the last season left off, effectively making for one continuously evolving piece of music throughout the years.
  • Even more astounding: while in Hawaii, every male humpback will sing the exact same song throughout their stay here, changes and all!

Whale songs really must be heard in person to fully appreciate their beauty. Book your Maui whale watching trip today and experience the amazing melodies of these fantastic creatures for yourself!

By Captain Dave

Did you know . . .

  • Baby humpback whales enjoy their time in their mothers’ womb; developing for an estimated 11 to 12 months before birth.
  • At birth, humpback whales are “only” 12-14 feet long.
  • Newborns also tip the scales at a weight of “just” 1 – 1 1/2 tons.
  • A young humpback whale will commonly be referred to as a “calf.”
  • The firsts six months of a humpback calf’s life are highly formative physically: During this time the calf will grow around an inch, and gain around 100 lbs. PER DAY!
  • The reason for such an enormous growth spurt: during this formative time the calf will feed only on its’ mother’s milk; a super concentrated product high in nutrients and fat.
  • Just how much milk will a calf consume during the first six months? Around 100 gallons per day.

Ready to learn even more about humpback whales and our marine life eco system? Book your Maui whale watch trip or Lanai snorkel to experience firsthand the wonders of Maui’s ever evolving seas!

By Captain Dave

Did you know . . .

  • Humpback whales are naturally solitary animals. Humpbacks do not mate for life, and are therefore not thought to be monogamous creatures.
  • Along with their suspected promiscuity, Humpback whale father are also suspected to play no defined parental role in the raising of the calf.
  • At the same time, individual humpback whale mothers have been found to have many calves bred by different fathers.
  • As with their mating structure, humpback whales oftentimes make “friends” only temporarily. The official term for these friendships is “associations.”
  • Whales who are “associated” with each other will exhibit one or more of the following properties:
    Surfacing together at the same time.
    Diving together at the same time.
    Traveling within a body length (or closer) of each other.
    Engaging in other similar behaviors.
  • Humpback whale associations are typically brief, lasting anywhere from just a few minutes, to at most a few days.

In just a few short months you will be able see these behaviors and more on one of our Maui whale watch tours. Book today!