03-25-2015: Lunge-feeding Humpback Whales, Common Dolphins

Moss Landing Lunge-feeding Humpback whales

The feeding frenzy is on. Photo: Michael Sack, 03-25-2015.

The humpback whale surface lunge-feeding action has been constant the last couple of days.

Moss Landing Humpback Whale

Lunge-feeding humpback whales just outside of Moss Landing. Photo: Michael Sack, 03-25-2015.

Early into the trip we vectored in on a handful of spouts and hovering birds on the horizon.

Moss Landing Lunge-feeding Humpback whales

It just kept on going. Photo: Michael Sack, 03-25-2015.

Moss Landing Humpback Whale

Non-stop lunge-feeding for 3-hours. Photo: Michael Sack, 03-25-2015.

As we got closer we knew we in for a show. Pelicans diving, birds on on the water, sea lions, common dolphins creating turbulence in the water. Splashing and watery mayhem.

Moss Landing Humpback Whale

Once we got on the scene, we didn’t leave for almost 3-hours. It was feeding frenzy the whole time. Even as we left and looked back, they never stopped popping their big fatty whale heads out of the water. Photo: Michael Sack, 03-25-2015.

And in the middle of it all were about six humpback whales popping their big fatty whale heads out the water. This is what you call surface lunge feeding.

Moss Landing Lunge-feeding Humpback whales

Moss Landing Lunge-feeding Humpback whale. Photo: Michael Sack, 03-25-2015.

Moss Landing Humpback Whales

Every 5-7 minutes for 3-hours straight. They just kept popping their wide open mouths up out of the water as they chased the anchovies up out of the water and into their throat pouches. Photo: Michael Sack, 03-25-2015.

Moss Landing Lunge-feeding Humpback Whale

Moss Landing Lunge-feeding Humpback Whale can’t get enough anchovies. Photo: Michael Sack, 03-25-2015.

 

Moss Landing Lunge-feeding Humpback Whale

Alaska style lunge-feeding right here Just outside of Moss Landing. Photo: Michael Sack, 03-25-2015.

And on the outskirts, scattered pods of common dolphins would come and go through it all. An amazing spectacle to behold.

Moss Landing Humpback Whales

Moss Landing Lunge-feeding Humpback Whale

The pink area that looks like a tongue is actually the palate on the roof of the whale’s mouth.

 

Moss Landing Humpback Whales

The anchovie productivity just outside of Moss Landing is astounding. Photo Michael Sack, 03-25-2015.

 

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