Research team has rare encounter with a minke whale mother and calf pair.
Although minke whales are not a rare species in the North Atlantic, and are known to migrate to the tropics in winter months,
they are rarely sighted in the Bahamas. This project has only documented 2 previous encounters with minke whales in the Northern Bahamas in the past 16 years, and 4 strandings, 2 of which were part
of the mass stranding on March 15th, 2000 during a naval exercise.
We have received a number of reports of
minke whales in the Southern Bahamas, suggesting they are more common further south during winter. For example, this year on January 9th Lorraine Minns reported sighting 5 minke whales off the
North End of Long Island, Southern Bahamas,
and on February 3rd, she sighted another minke whale breaching repeatedly in the same area.
On February 8th, while waiting for beaked whales to surface, the research team were surprised to spot the mother calf pair of minke whales off South Abaco. The calf appeared to be only a
few months old, and although appeared curious at times, remained close to its' mother throughout the encounter.