Monday, September 28, 2009

Whales in Hermanus

It claims to be the best spot in the world for whale watching from the shore. There certainly is a ton of whales that come here every year. We headed up to Hermanus on Thursday during a public holiday, it also happened to be the first day of the whale festival up there. I love the fact that they have a festival here every year to welcome back the Southern Right Whales to the Cape Town waters.

These amazing giants come to Hermanus to mate, calve, nurse and just rest up and prepare to head back down to the south to feed. These animals are so intelligent I can't believe that people used to hunt these them. The Southern Right Whale got the name for being the "right" whale because they floated when they were dead. Clever....I guess.

There's a blog I read from time to time by a guy named Mark, who is living out in China. (He helped me figure out how to continue posting after the government blocked blogspot.) He posted THIS fantastic article from the New York Times about whales called Watching Whales Watching Us. Here is an excerpt from it:

"Whales, we now know, teach and learn. They scheme. They cooperate, and they grieve. They recognize themselves and their friends. They know and fight back against their enemies. And perhaps most stunningly, given all of our transgressions against them, they may even, in certain circumstances, have learned to trust us again."

It's a bit of a lengthy article, but is really interesting and definitely worth the read.

We also came to Hermanus last year to view the whales, and I have to say, they put on a bit of a better show last year. This year they weren't as close to the shore, so we didn't get any good shots of them jumping. But a mother and her calf did come in quite close to shore, and it was amazing to view them so near.

From this year:

My worst nightmare.


Gorgeous coastline

Mother and her calf

Possible Jaws, but more than likely a whale

Here are some of the shots from last year:

1 comment:

Angela said...

Amazing pics! I am getting the feeling that Bryan and I need to come visit you in S. Africa!

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