To say I’m obsessed with whales is an understatement. For the past month or so, I’ve been taunted by a good friend of mine – who happens to be a boat captain on island – about whether or not any whales have been seen around St. John this year. I’ve said none have made an appearance yet – and I still maintain my ground on that statement .. well until yesterday – and he swears they’ve been around for the past two months. (But I wholeheartedly think he’s wrong.) I’ve been scouring the waters around St. John since February looking for these amazing little creatures. I’ve asked countless boat captains, tourists, locals, famed photographers, etc. if they’ve seen any … nothing. And every time I am anywhere near the water I say to whomever is next to me, “I wonder if I’m going to see a whale today.” I’m sure this probably gets old to my friends, but again, I’m pretty obsessed with whales and they know that, so they put up with me. 🙂
Then yesterday happened.
So yesterday morning I woke up and perused Facebook like I do many mornings when I came across this post by Caribbean Buzz Helicopters:
Immediately I go crazy. They’re here! They’re here! I thought to myself.. So I did what any blogger would do. I reached out to the island’s super fabulous and amazingly talented photographer, Mr. Steve Simonsen, to let him know, and then grabbed some friends and went whale spotting.
So there I was sitting at Honeymoon Beach Thursday afternoon when in the far distance I saw a huge splash off near Thatch Cay. I looked at my friend and screamed “whale!” Then another splash. My goodness, I was so excited!
For those of you who will be out looking for whales in the next few days, here is what you will see from afar. This picture was taken by News of St. John reader Deb Kilmer, who lives over on St. Thomas.
The reason these sightings are so special is because the whales only make a brief appearance around St. John during this time of year. 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.
Very cool, isn’t it.
So please, if you’re on St. John, keep a lookout for these beautiful creatures. And if you’re lucky enough to spot one, please send us pics! You can send them to [email protected]
In the meantime, click here to see more pics and a short video we took of a mom and baby calf last year.