If you know me personally or if you’ve been reading News of St. John for the past couple of years, you’re probably aware of my whale obsession. Each year around this time I start searching the waters around St. John for whales. And guess what, they’re here!
I was perusing Facebook last night when I came across a post on David Thomeczek’s page – David manages both Coconut Coast Studios and Hale Lani over in Great Cruz Bay. In his post, David mentioned he was out on the deck with a guest at Hale Lani when they saw a whale just off the South shore – so exciting! Unfortunately he wasn’t able to snap a pic with his iPhone, but I’m sure someone out there will be able to in the next few days.
So some of you may be wondering what the deal is with the whales. Well, each year during the months of February and March, whales can be seen swimming through our waters and also around Thatch Cay, North Drop, Congo and Lovango Cays. The whales travel to South America via the Caribbean so they can mate and calve. The calves spend their first few months of life in the warm waters of the Caribbean, building up a layer of blubber that will keep them warm in colder waters.
Last March, Captain Jason Siska of Island Roots captured an amazing video just off of St. John. Check it out:
For those of you who plan on doing a bit of whale watching, adult humpback whales have dark grey bodies and are between 35 and 60 feet long. They are endangered, so you’re not allowed to touch them. Just love them from afar, which is at least 100 yards away according to federal law. And most importantly if you are lucky enough to see the whales, send us pics!
In the meantime, here’s a not so professional video we took when we saw the whales in February 2014:
And here are a few more images taken in 2014 by St. John’s amazing resident photographer Steve Simonsen: