Grey Whales - A spectacular sea beast
Grey whales are some of the fascinating creatures you will ever witness. They are resilient survivors who have returned from the brink of extinction due to excessive hunting. Yet their famous friendliness and willingness to play with humans have made them very popular celebrities for sightseeing on boats. Here are some interesting facts about these magnificent creatures that make them one of the must-watch while in Depoe Bay.
- Maybe they are not the biggest whales in the ocean, but they look enormous from any distance at a size of 15 meters and 35 tons. Imagine five African elephants stacked on top of each other.
- They are grey, just like their name, with whitish blotches all over. These blotches eventually develop as they age. But one of the distinct features on their skin is the presence of white round barnacles. Especially on their flippers, head and tail, they can have up to 400 lbs of barnacles. And added to that, thousands of orange whale lice crawling on them, which are the size of our thumbnails. But don't get revolted by the sound of it. They give the whale its distinct appearance that looks quite amazing. Humans won’t get affected by them even when they touch them.
- Grey whales are baleen mammals. They don't have teeth, so they filter their food through short baleen plates in their mouth. They often dive down, take scoops of critter-filled muck in their mouth and then strain it through their baleens. This leaves a distinct plume of mud and sand in its wake.
- Now with stricter laws against poaching them, they have become more curious and friendly. But once upon a time, they were termed as the "devilfish". As they were hunted extensively by humans in the earlier centuries, they had become quite aggressive to protect themselves and their kids. They would actively attack small boats used to kill them commercially. However, nowadays, they have developed a trust for humans, and many even allow themselves to be touched and petted.
- Almost all Pacific Grey Whales are born on the heavily protected lagoons of San Ignacio, Scammon's and the west coast of Baja California. They migrate to the food-rich Bering Sea in the spring and again come back during fall completing about 14,000 miles traveling.
Grey Whale watching in Oregon
The best time to watch whales is during the migration time along the Oregon shoreline. They don't travel in huge groups and sometimes make solo journeys. You can watch from several viewpoints in and around Depoe Bay, including the Whale Watching Center State Park. But the best way to get the full authentic interaction is onboard our 50’ Delta charter boats. The Dockside Charters offers sightseeing excursions daily from January to December under suitable weather conditions. We also offer deep-sea fishing with clean, comfortable, well-maintained boats for the best fishing & whale watching adventures.
More info on whales
- Humpback Whale Facts
- Pacific Grey Whale Facts
- Blue Whale Facts
- The ultimate sea giants
- Spectacular sea beast
- The beauty of the Oregon coast