Nautilus Whale Watching in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico - Photo Gallery
The humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) is a species of baleen whale. One of the larger rorqual species, adults range in length from 13 to 18 meters (42.65 to 59 feet) and weigh between 30 to 40 tons (66,139 to 88,185 lbs). The humpback has a distinctive body shape, with long pectoral fins and a knobbly head. It is known for breaching and other distinctive surface behaviors, making it popular with whale watchers. Males produce a complex song lasting 10 to 20 minutes, which they repeat for hours at a time. Its purpose is not clear, though it may have a role in mating.
Found in oceans and seas around the world, humpback whales typically migrate up to 25,000 km (16,000 mi) each year. Humpbacks feed only in summer, in polar waters, and migrate to tropical or subtropical waters to breed and give birth in the winter when they fast and live off their fat reserves. Their diet consists mostly of krill and small fish. Humpbacks have a diverse repertoire of feeding methods, including the bubble net technique.
Like other large whales, the humpback was a target for the whaling industry. Once hunted to the brink of extinction, its population fell by an estimated 90% before a 1966 moratorium. While stocks have partially recovered, entanglement in fishing gear, collisions with ships and noise pollution continue to impact the population of 80,000.
Click on any image below to enlarge.
Blow Humpback whale behavior
Breach Humpback whale behavior
Flipper Slap Humpback whale behavior
Fluke down Humpback whale behavior
Fluke up Humpback whale behavior
Head slap Humpback whale behavior
Pendule arc Humpback whale behavior
Pendule throw Humpback whale behavior
Spy hop Humpback whale behavior
Tail slap Humpback whale behavior