During our adventure we often sight marine life
and this becomes a part of the tour. The captains will share their
knowledge of the type of marine life, their habits and they will
describe the type of activity and possible reasons why.
We have a resident population of Hawaiian spinner
dolphins that frequent our shores. We see them most of the time.
It is rare not to see the spinner dolphins, but occasionally there
is that rare day so we can not say everytime! The dolphins are
a marine mammal and are protected under the marine mammal protection
laws. They are a curious animal and it is quite common for them
to seek out our boats, play in our wake and perform aerial acrobatics.
Usually when the dolphins come along side they actually "put"
on a show for us! Hawaiian spinner dolphins get their name because
of the aerial acrobatics they perform. They can jump 10 to 12
feet above the water often doing a "corkscrew" type
spin. They also will do tail over head flip, slap the waters with
their tails, swim upside down and at times they appear that they
are actually trying to splash our passengers! We have been doing
these tours for almost 30 years and still never tire of interacting
with the dolphins!
Another animal we encounter are the humpback whales.
They are awesome! Every year they migrate from the cold Alaskan
waters to Hawaii. They come here to mate and have their calves.
During the mating seasons the males will "show off"
to impress and win over the females. This gives us opportunities
to see the many activities during this mating phase. The 40+ ton
males will breach (almost completely jump out of the water and
spin), slap the water with their flukes (tails), head butt each
other and slap the water with their pectoral fins several times
(as many as 50 -60 repeated slaps on the water). When several
males are involved they will carry on in this manner while the
female will watch from a distance. The most impressive gets the
When the mother gives birth she is usually accompanied
by an escort and they will help the calf along while it learns
to breathe, swim and eat. The calves will generally start experimenting
their skills of breaching shortly after birth and that gives us
a lot of above the surface whale watching.
The experience of watching 40+ foot and 40+ ton
whales from a 24 foot Zodiac raft is something you will never
forget! We do follow the laws of stopping 100+ yards away from
these magnificent animals, but it is not uncommon for them to
be curious about us and come right under the boat! Do not worry
they are non-aggressive to us and our rafts do not intimidate
them or scare them away. It is an adrenaline rush when we have
The zodiacs are the perfect craft for observing
1. They are fast so that enables us to get to
the whales quickly when we see their activity level increase.
The speed also enables us to see different pods of whales when
the pods are spread out. Slower boats tend to find one whale and
stay with it the whole tour.
2. We are at water level so you are RIGHT THERE
when the whales are around us, not 15 feet above them. We have
even felt the mist of their blows.
3. The whales are not intimidated by our smaller
4. The captain and crew are right there with you
in the small group of passengers and they will be explaining the
various activities you are viewing!
5. We have hydrophone listening devices on board
and when the whales are singing you will hear the incredible humpback
whale songs LIVE!
Besides lots and lots of colorful fish and corals
we also see turtles, flying fish, manta rays, pilot whales and
even occasional whale sharks are among the many other marine animals
we see above the surface of the ocean. Photo opportunities abound
and video cameras are the best for filming the marine life around
the calm waters of Kailua-Kona.