Going out to meet humpback whales and their young calves is possible by embarking on a research boat with the nature guides from the Shelltone Whale Project. If you are lucky, you can get close to these huge marine animals.
These 12-16m-long giants weigh 25-45 tonnes, and are easily recognisable by their black backs and humps in front of the dorsal fin. Present in several locations on the island, including Porte d'Enfer, Pointe des Chateaux, and Great Vigie, they arrive in December, at the heart of mating season, and leave in May for the cold waters of the north Atlantic when the calves reach two to three months. They head back north, to New England, to look for krill, a mix primarily of small shrimp and herring, and then they return the following year to give birth and mate again, which allows scientists to identify them and to better understand their habits.
You may be surprised by the courtship ritual, where the males, who are very demonstrative, jump and 'stand' vertically, while 'singing' a very strange song...
Shelltone Whale Project is a general interest association carrying out scientific research on cetaceans. They offer visitors a considerate, conscious approach to experiencing an incredible moment with humpback whales, sperm whales, dolphins, pilot whales, and false killer whales.
Shelltone Whale Project
Port de Baille Argent