Extraordinary Humpback Cow/Calf Encounter
2013 is already an epic year for Socorro diving. The level of shark activity is at an all-time high and It seems like every trip sets some type of record for unusual marine encounters. But nothing in our 20+ years of exploring the Socorro Islands prepared us for a Humpback Cow/Calf encounter which lasted 2 months! Yes - as amazing as it sounds, we saw the same cow/calf on every trip for nearly 2 months.
The 2-Month Cow/Calf Encounter (the Beginning)
Every year, giant Humpback Whales migrate to the Socorro Islands to mate and give birth. We call this time of the year "Humpback Season" as they return year after year.
In the early years of exploring Socorro, there were lots of topside encounters with the whales. Breaching, spy-hopping, diving, and tail-slapping were common. But underwater encounters were very unusual. That has changed in recent years, with more and more underwater encounters...
This year we met our first-ever newborn calf in mid-January (that's the shot at the beginning of this month's eNEWS). For the next 2 months as the calf became used to our divers he/she became friskier and friskier, and that's when we knew something wonderful was happening.
Here is the phenomenal video footage shot by our professional videographer, Adil Schindler - check it out!
Of all our encounters over the years, this one was particularly serene, majestic, and awe-inspiring - all at the same time. And yet it kept going for almost two months.
The Humpback Cow/Calf Encounter
Our first encounter with the cow/calf was very exciting as we had never encountered a newborn calf before. But little did we know that additional encounters with both whales (and a third, called the "escort"), over the next two months would get better and better.
With each encounter, the calf would get bolder, spending more time away from its mother and more time with the divers. Each trip when we returned to Roca Partida, we were holding our breath. Would our favorite whales be there? They did not disappoint. We saw them on every trip through February and into March.
You can follow the adventure on our Solmar V YouTube Channel, and (if you wish) leave comments on each video. All of the Solmar V YouTube Videos may be found here .
This article is from the Solmar
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