Satisfied Humpback Whales #3

Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)

Palos Park, United States

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Third in the series of a humpback whale cooperative bubblenet feeding lunge. In this image the whales are beginning to descend underwater after lunging above the surface. Each of the whales’ jaws have closed but one can see the throat pleats distended by huge amounts of seawater before the animals expel the water. Collections of barnacles adorn the throat pleats of the whales.

These humpback whales were cooperatively bubblenetting for herring very close to our boat. Humpback whales release air to create a curtain of confusion around their prey, in essence corralling their intended meal of herring. When a ring of bubbles suddenly begins to rise to the surface of the water, one may also hear the humpbacks’ unique ascending calls and trumpet blasts through the hull of the boat. The calls may be used to stun or disorient the bait fish and also may signal other feeding whales to synchronize their movements.

Click onto the link to hear a sample of a humpback whale cooperative feeding call (Thanks to Captain Dennis Rogers and Alaska Sea Adventures for use of this feeding call.)


First image in the series of humpback whale bubblenet feeding


Second image in the series of humpback bubblenet feeding


Third image in the series of humpback bubblenet feeding

Finally, the following short video represents why I adore humpback whales. Please forgive my humble, awkward attempts to create video footage of the whales. I think I need a proper HD video camera plus a non-rocking boat in addition to videographraphy lessons. Next time I’ll stick to a DSLR but in the meantime, please enjoy this tribute to my favorite big beasties of the deep.

Tebenkof Bay along Kuiu Island in South Chatham Strait, The Inside Passage, SE Alaska, USA

July 8, 2010

Canon 7D, Canon 100-400mm lens, shutter 1/2000, f/5.6, exposure bias +0.33, shutter priority, focal length 100mm, ISO 400

Artwork Comments

  • DonDavisUK
  • Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)
  • LisaBeth
  • Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)
  • DebYoung
  • Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)
  • AuntDot
  • Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)
  • AmberLily
  • Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)
  • Poete100
  • Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)
  • meowiyer
  • Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)
  • ChrisMSnyder
  • Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)
  • Sharksladie
  • Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)
  • Carl M. Moore
  • Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)
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