Marine Animals, Pacific Northwest
Humpback Whales were at one time an endangered species, but were saved from the very brink of extinction by a moratorium on whaling in 1966.
Before the ban, their quantities had dwindled to only a few whales. Today there are nearly 90,000. Though not as many as there once were, it is enough to ensure the recovery & survival of these massive creatures. We have many of these beautiful giants visit the island every year.
An adult humpback whale can reach up to 16 m in length, and can weigh up to nearly 36,000 kg. Males of this species sing or communicate through sound transmitted across vast distances. These songs, lasting up to 20 minutes, may have a role in mating. We have always called them singing whales.
Humpback whales travel thousands of miles every year in their migrations, and are found in all oceans on the planet. They are seen regularly on their routes along the pacific northwest coast.
They feed during the warm summer, up or down toward the poles, then travel to tropical waters in winter, to give birth to their young. While in these warmer waters, they live off their vast fat stores for energy, and then migrate back to polar waters, to replenish their supply through feeding.