2017 whale watching season begins on Mid North Coast

Start praying for a windy day – as a Port Macquarie whale watching vessel tour operator says wind tends to create the perfect conditions for whale photos. 

Sean Armstrong from the Cruise Terminal said the wind on top of the water surface can make it harder for whales to communicate with each other underwater. They tend to breach more in windy conditions to assist with communication. 

Port News ventured out on a whale watching tour on May 15. As the water was quite choppy it made it hard to spot any potential water spouts from whales. However a pod of about 30 dolphins were sighted. 

The Cruise Terminal has been tracking whales from Port Stephens. It is predicted whales take 35 hours to travel to Port Macquarie from Port Stephens. 

Whales only shut off half their brain while they are asleep. This allows them to continue to travel while at night and ensures they are still alert enough to breathe. 

Mr Armstrong predicts by May 22 a lot of whales will be visible from boat vessels and vantage points including the Lighthouse Beach look out, Shelly Beach and Nobbys Beach. 

The owner of Port Jet Anthony Heeney said there were a couple of sightings at Jervis Bay last week, signalling the mammals were on track to reach the Mid North Coast. 

There were reports on Thursday, May 11 a whale was seen off the coast at Shelly Beach, Port Macquarie.

Mr Heeney said the whales can be spotted consistently especially in the month of June. 

Migaloo is an albino white whale who has become notorious for his travels which have been documented along the eastern coastline. 

According to the White Whale Research Centre, Migaloo is Australia’s most well-known humpback whale. 

When he was first sighted he was the only known all white whale in the world. 

As he migrates up the east coast of Australia from Antarctica to the warmer waters of Tropical North Queensland his distinctive all white colouring allows people to report sightings.

Mr Heeney said said there is every chance Migaloo could make an appearance in 2017. 

“He definitely stands out when he is around,” he said. 

People can expect to see mainly humpbacks and possibly killer and southern right whales. 

“We’re very lucky in Port to see the whales without having to travel very far at all,” Mr Heeney said.  

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