2009 12 11- Five more interesting matches from our 2009 inventory of Bermuda whale fluke ids Print E-mail
Written by Andrew Stevenson   


Our 0236 was photographed on Challenger Bank on 14th of April 2009. On the right is na2576 photographed 29 years ago. The whale was first seen in 1980 on Silver Bank where it was photographed by Professor Hal Whitehead, Hal also photographed it in 1982 on the Grand Banks, one of the few whales known from that area. It was then seen in 1989 in Samana Bay by Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies.


The photograph 0290 2 bd 2009 04 25 rj above was sent to me today from Roseli Johnson who took the photograph on 25th April 2009. This evening I matched it to Allied Whale's na5637 and Dr Stevick confirmed the match. This whale was first photographed in 1989 in Samana Bay and again in 1992 on Silver Bank, both in Dominican Republic. That's a 20-year match.


Above left is our 0307 taken on the 30th of April 2009. We had overnighted on Challenger Bank and had listened to a whale singing throughout the night. We heard this whale singing through the hull of the boat. We also heard it breathing when it came to surface. In the morning we saw one whale close to the boat and got a photo id of it. There were no other whales immediately around the boat so it is a reasonable guess that this fluke id is of the singer. We then went through Allied Whale's catalogue and matched it to na6094. The only previous sighting was taken by me in Bermuda on April 24th 2007! This is yet another indication that the humpbacks maintain site fidelity to the seamounts they use on their migratory crossings from the Caribbean to the feeding grounds up north. But where does this whale feed? 

The other fluke id we obtained was once again through Camilla Stringer. She matched our 0292 on the left below taken on 26th of April 2009 by Andrew Dobson with Allied Whale's na2376. The only prior sighting of that whale is from Puerto Rico in March of 1984 by Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies, photo on right. That's a 25 year span.


And the photo below was taken here in Bermuda on 19th of April 2009 and when I was at Allied Whale this summer I matched it to an Icelandic whale, na8613. This is only the second Bermuda-Icelandic match made yet. This is aYoNAH  Iceland match - first seen 21 Jun 1992 in Iceland (YONAH) , photo below right, then again on 15 Jun 1998 in Iceland by Bonnie Gretz in a photo that came to Allied Whale via Eric Hoyt.



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