Posted on: December 31, 2013

Rescued Calf Observed, Breaching and Active

The entangled humpback whale calf that was first sighted by Pacific Whale Foundation on December 15 and rescued by Ed Lyman and his team at the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary on December 18 has been observed -- breaching and active off the coast of Maui. 
 
Pacific Whale Foundation's vessel Ocean Intrigue encountered the calf during two of its whalewatch cruises on December 25. The calf was with its mother and an escort. Best of all, the calf was very surface active, chin slapping and breaching for at least an hour. Pacific Whale Foundation Naturalist Jakara Hubbard obtained photos of the calf during the cruise and supplied them to Pacific Whale Foundation's research team. 
 
Dr Emmanuelle Martinez, Pacific Whale Foundation's Senior Research Scientist, compared photos of the mother-calf pod sighted on the 15th and the 25th of December. According to Dr. Martinez, there seems to be a cookie cutter shark mark in a similar position on the calf and the dorsal of the mother is quite similar between the photos. The marks left by the rope are also in same part of the body (posterior to the blow hole).
 
Based on this review, Pacific Whale Foundation has a good degree of confidence that this is the rescued calf.
 
To read about the rescue that took place on December 18, visit http://www.pacificwhale.org/content/entangled-humpback-whale-calf-rescued-lanai